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Principal's Message

  • Ms. Champion







    Garfield Gators… “Inspiring A Whole New World Through Kindness!" “Set your kindness free!"

    Welcome Back Garfield Families, My name is Ms. Melanie Champion, Interim Principal of Garfield. I would like to welcome all of you back to school for the 2019-2020 academic school year. As most of you know, Mr. Klappenback moved up near Watsonville to take an assistant superintendent position in a school district up there. I have been in communication with him and he is already missing the Garfield students and community. 

    As a retired principal from SAUSD, I am often called back to take over a school if a principal is on a leave of absence or has resigned from the district as Mr. Klappenback did. The District is currently interviewing for the Garfield Principal position and as soon as someone has been selected and approved by the Board of Education, he/she will start their assignment here.  Until then, I will be here for the students, the staff, the parents, and the community.

    I have worked in SAUSD for thirty years and have loved every minute of it. I was the principal at Greenville Fundamental for sixteen years and at Adams for 6 years. In retirement, I have worked at 14 different schools, including elementary and secondary. I get to be with students and staff again and keep learning myself. I am passionate about Santa Ana students and want to continue working to make them college and career ready for the 21st century. My office is always open so please feel free to make an appointment or stop by and if I am available, I can meet with you at that moment. 

    Although I have only been here a few weeks, I am already impressed with the level of teacher and staff competence, their dedication, and commitment. You are sending your children to an awesome school and I know they will reach their full potential. 

    If you are returning to Garfield Elementary, WELCOME BACK! If you are a new Gator this year, WELCOME TO THE TEAM! If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to stop by and meet with me or call the front office.  

    Remember… Garfield Gators SWISH (Scholarly Worthy Innovative Successful Honorable)

    Take care and have a great school year!


    Ms. Melanie Champion


    (714) 972-5300

    Garfield Elementary School

    Santa Ana Unified School District


    PLTW Logo    AVID

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