Farewell Staff!


Candice Cugnier

Assistant Principal Analese Alvarez is leaving San Marcos to be Principal of Ukiah High School.

As the end of the 2022-2023 school year approaches, teachers and staff depart from San Marcos and take on a new journey. Employees leaving this school year range from 2-30 years that they have served as staff at San Marcos. 

Our assistant principal, who has been a dean in the past, Analese Alvarez, has been at San Marcos for four years. She will be moving to Ukiah, California to become principal at Ukiah High School. During her time at San Marcos, she has been very grateful to be able to provide for the Santa Barbara community, her home. As a goodbye statement, Dr. Alvarez said, “It’s a bittersweet move away from home again, but it has been an honor to be back and working at SMHS. We are the best kept secret in the district – IYKYK.”

English teacher Marie Bagdanov will be leaving San Marcos to move to Gig Harbor, Washington. (Candice Cugnier)

During her ten years at San Marcos, Marie Bagdanov has taught English 9, 10, AP Literature, and AP Art History. Her and her husband are moving to Gig Harbor in Washington, so that they are able to be closer to family. She hopes to teach high school again in Washington. Her final message to San Marcos was, “Thank you to my amazing students past and present. You are truly what makes this job worth it. I love you all and feel so much gratitude to have had the privilege of being your teacher.”

Spanish teacher Zachary Eichert is leaving San Marcos after also teaching economics, government, and world history. (Candice Cugnier)

Zachary Eichert is leaving San Marcos after teaching world history, economics, government, and Spanish for eight years . During his time here, he enjoyed watching students shine in their areas of interest. He plans on spending his summer finishing an IKE Surfboard video with his uncle. He leaves us with, “Thank you, students! Continue showing up and making an effort. Be generous and kind to friends and strangers. … And wear a helmet when riding a bicycle, please. It could save your life!”

Chemistry teacher Liz Bandi is leaving San Marcos to go to San Luis Obispo. (Candice Cugnier)

Liz Bandi has been at San Marcos for three years, teaching multiple levels of chemistry. She mentions her favorite memory, “Doing chemistry labs with bright students!” Her next chapter brings her to a new home in San Luis Obispo, where she will continue teaching chemistry. 

Math teacher Mackenzie Griffin is leaving San Marcos to go to Mountain View High School in the Bay Area. (Candice Cugnier)

Mackenzie Griffin, two year San Marcos math teacher, plans on teaching math and supporting Emerging Multilingual students at Mountain View High School in the Bay Area. She has been thankful for the opportunities she has had, making connections to become a better teacher. She shares, “This was not an easy decision to make. Santa Barbara has been my home for the last seven years, and San Marcos is a great school with so many caring staff members and kind students.” If interested in keeping touch, follow her teacher instagram, @just.sum.math.teacher. 

Art teacher Karol Kolasa is retiring after 30 years at San Marcos. (Candice Cugnier)

Karol Kolasa, an art, special education, and health teacher, has taught at San Marcos for 30 years, and will now be retiring. Her retirement plans are to travel across the country, swim, ski, and spend time with her family. In her goodbye message, she said, “It has been a wonderful career teaching here at SMHS. I will really miss my students and the staff, but will come back to substitute teach eventually!” 

Without the staff at San Marcos, the school would not be able to effectively run. It is important to celebrate and cherish the memories students have made with all staff members. If given the chance, reach out to the leaving staff members and thank them for all of their hard work and time they have dedicated at San Marcos!