“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.” Plutarch, one of the earliest Greek moral philosophers believed that the human mind isn't like a container that needs to be filled, but rather like wood that must be ignited in order to create an impulse to think independently and with an intense desire to seek out the truth. This quote has driven my educational philosophy since I began my teaching career in 1998.
I am Candice Schilling and am the kindergarten through 4th grade Assistant Principal here at Westgate. I began my teaching career after graduating from Metropolitan State University of Denver in 1998 with my Bachelor of Arts Degree in English with a minor in Reading Instruction. I earned my Elementary Teaching license during this program as well and started teaching 3rd grade in Douglas County. I continued to teach grades 3, 4 and 5 over the next decade and a half and when I was 9 months pregnant with my third child, I finished my graduate degree from the University of Colorado at Denver! And no! I did not fit in the desks while attending classes! :) My Master of Arts Degree is in Curriculum and Instruction; Literacy, Language and Culturally Responsive Teaching. I also earned my Reading Teacher Endorsement for the state of Colorado while attending this program. I moved from Douglas County to Denver Public Schools for a couple of years where I focused on my craft as a Literacy Teacher, and then back into the traditional 3rd grade classroom in Jefferson County Schools. More recently, I was the Instructional Coach and PreK - 8th grade Technology Teacher at a charter school in Littleton Colorado. My lifetime of experience in education has prepared me and led me to Westgate Community School where I am thrilled to be a part of an incredible team of leaders and teachers that want to ignite a passion for learning in all of our students.
As for my personal life, I am a mother of 3 children, Madison (18), Ellie (15), and Jonah (8). I love to spend time with my children, and our three dogs. I am a foodie and love to not only eat but I love to cook and bake as well. When I have downtime, I like to read, go on hikes, swim, and travel. My family is what motivates me to get up each day and work hard to be the best version on myself.