HomeCity NewsHollingsworth to Retire at End of School Year

Hollingsworth to Retire at End of School Year

Popular Teacher, Carver Principal Calls It A Career After 38 Years

Liz Hollingsworth, for 21 years the beloved principal at Carver Elementary School, will retire at the end of the school year, it was announced last week in a statement released by the San Marino Unified School District.

Hollingsworth told The Tribune she first considered retirement after suffering a broken ankle four years ago and has since discussed the matter “several times” with her husband, Mike. Hollingsworth said the decision was made this spring, and approved last week by the Board of Education. “It was like an out of body experience when I told Dr. Cherniss,” said Hollingsworth, who also admitted to some mild second thoughts.

Mrs. Hollingsworth has served the district for 38 years and her presence will be sorely missed.

“Selfishly, you’d like to see Liz continue at Carver since she’s such an amazing principal; however we need to be happy for her and support her choices,” said Dr. Cherniss. “Fortunately, Liz will stay on board assisting the SMUSD with our instructional services division for many years to come.”

Hollingsworth began her career as a 4th grade teacher at Carver in 1978. She took an RSP teaching position at Valentine Elementary School, where she taught 4th and 5th grade students. She also worked at Huntington Middle School where she served as a 6th grade resource teacher for eight years before transferring back to Carver. In 1991, she was the recipient of the San Marino Unified School District ‘Teacher of the Year’ award and in 1995, she was appointed by the Board of Education to the position of Carver Elementary School Principal.

Known throughout the educational community as a beloved child advocate, Mrs. Hollingsworth is well known for her ability to remember the names of every student on her campus and to make every child feel special.

“On behalf of the Board of Education, I extend our sincerest appreciation for 38 years of dedicated service as a professional educator, school principal and District leader,” said School Board President Nam Jack. “Words cannot express how grateful we are for her invaluable contributions and exemplary service to San Marino Schools.”

The appreciation extends to her faculty, who were shocked by the announcement. Several were in tears at the campus on Thursday morning.

“Elizabeth Hollingsworth has been an amazing administrator and friend,” said Erin Diaz, a teacher at Carver. “She has been a fantastic principal to hundreds of children, including my own. I feel privileged to have worked with her for the past 20 years. Carver is so lucky to have had her and she will be dearly missed.”

Susan Flanagan has spent the past two decades under Hollingsworth’s direction and wholeheartedly agrees.

“Carver was the first school in the San Marino Unified School District that was awarded the prestigious Blue Ribbon Award in 2005, and this was due to Liz Hollingsworth,” said Mrs. Flanagan. “She spearheaded the endeavor, which was no easy feat.”

Flanagan was part of the contingent that traveled to Washington, DC, to accept the award.

San Marino resident Dan Jett was a student under Hollingsworth, then ‘Miss Platon,’ and has enjoyed his 38-year association with the educator.

“She had the perfect temperament for us fourth graders,” Jett said.

His youngest matriculates in six weeks, meaning the Jett Family has bookended Hollingsworth’s career at Carver.

“Liz Hollingsworth has made an indelible mark on Carver Elementary and on this entire school district,” said Dr. Cherniss. “She has dedicated her career to San Marino and we will forever be thankful. I congratulate Liz on the exciting next steps in her life and her continued work to support the San Marino Unified School District.”

The last words are saved for Hollingsworth herself, who will continue to serve the district as a consultant.

“My husband and I are both very excited about my plans to retire,” she said. “I appreciate the opportunity to continue to work with the District to support our instructional programs. For me, this is the absolute best of both worlds. My fondest memories will be of the children, and of the wonderful relationships over the years with our amazing faculty, staff, families, and community.”

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