We’ll miss you, Mr. Singer!
Cherdonae Chaney, Frances Enriquez, Sharon Yu, Susana Bedolla, and Diana Cabanas
June 11, 2012
Filed under News
Jason singer, the father of not only two adorable children, but also the father figure of many students at King, is serving his final days as principal. After being principal of KIPP: Summit and KIPP: King, this mentor, friend, community adviser will be saying goodbye to us this school year.
Singer has definitely made a significant impact on the lives of the Kipp community. This absolutely outstanding principal has done many things that are not always visible, but these behind-the-scenes acts are still meaningful to King today. He has selectively handpicked teachers and planned our school’s expansion (which is currently happening) by calling sponsors for donations to purchase necessities in classrooms. His accomplishments should be remembered and celebrated as he prepares to depart.
Mr. Singer built the KIPP Community of San Lorenzo from ground up. He walked around the area, knocking tirelessly at every door, asking parents to give their children an opportunity to attend to KIPP: Summit. Frances Enriquez recalls, “Mr Singer coming to my house to give my family a Powerpoint to convince my brother to attend KIPP: Summit.” A few years later, he established KIPP: King so Summit students could continue their journey to attend college.
Since 2003, Mr. Singer has inspired students to “Work hard, be nice.” This was the motto that pushed students to discover their abilities to succeed. He also taught every Kipp student that “demography does not define destiny” by teaching us that everyone has the capability to reach the American Dream. Mr. Singer befriended students and changed their lives with his encouragements and passion to give students of every racial background to get into college. Mr. Singer has made a momentous impact in the lives of sisters, Senior ’12 Jessika Pacheco and Junior Diana Cabanas. Diana said “first, he knocked on our door and gave us an opportunity to come to a school be pushed to our limits. Then, when we attended the school, he would stay until 8 o’clock at night to make sure that we finished our homework.” Carlos Gonzalez said: “ He always encouraged me to do my best, and he stayed after school until ten when I finished my base camp letters.”
Something students will remember about Mr. Singer’s are his epic speeches. Raquel Popejoy said that she will miss “Mr Singer’s compelling speeches” while Haley Lopez will remember his “everlasting speeches.” Sharon Yu will miss “standing in the radiant sun sweating while Mr. Singer continues re-emphasizing his point.” Even new students who just joined the King community will remember the difference Singer made in their lives. Laetitia Tiani-Vessah said: “I will miss how warm he was when I first met him and how welcoming he was when I transferring to this school.” Current senior Ivy Feng said: “I’ll miss his motivational speeches, he has helped me a lot since 5th grade and given me a lot of support throughout these years.”
Not only a compelling speaker, but also a significant presence, Singer will be missed. Lisa Huo said that “it’ll feel empty; it’ll be different not seeing him at school,” while Newton Kinyanjui added, “I’ll miss his leadership, fatherly figure, and his personality being around.” Khalid Almandeel said that “he was certainly a presence, ” adding that losing Singer “will leave a hole that needs to be filled.” Even alumni members remember his impact. Valerie Ma, member of the first graduating class said that “he’s inspiring.”
Mr. Singer was a part of every student’s life. “He stays connected with his students,” Shanel Singh claimed. Newton Kinyanjui said that he will always remember Mr. Singer betting him in basketball. “He would always stop by to make some hoops when he was heading towards his car. If he made it in, we would have to wear church suits the next day.”
Mr. Singer also gave great advice to students that were in need. A good example of that time was when Singer gave great advice and a push that was well needed to Junior Cherdonae Chaney ’13. She was in a tough situation when it came to school and had trouble figuring out how to manage it. Mr. Singer came with a few words. Chaney remembers that he said, “I know school is hard but no matter how hard school gets, you have to continue so that you can have a better life, and you want that don’t you? So push through it” This advice forever remains in her head. Mr. Singer was a person to go to when you were having trouble and needed someone to talk to; he was friendly and is there to help when it was needed most. Even when students were in trouble, Mr. Singer helped make it positive. Nokono Swen ‘14 said, “ when I got in trouble. Mr. Singer was always understanding and made me reflect on decisions that I make and how the little things affect my community.” Nokono knows that Mr. Singer helped her to be able to reflect on her situation .
Since day one, Singer’s passion to get every student to go to college never changed. He still believes that despite their background, every student has an opportunity to go to college, and every student should take it. Although he is saying goodbye, many students will remember him as the hard working principal that believed that they could do something with their life, even when no one else believed that they could. His dream of creating not just one, but two schools that set up each student for a successful life in college and beyond has came true.