My name is Mrs. Paula Kohler and I’m so excited to be the principal of Garfield Elementary.  This will be my twenty-fourth year in education, and I hope to share with you my passion for teaching and learning.  We will have a great year as we work together, ensuring the success of all students.

I’d like to start by introducing myself.  After earning my bachelors and masters degrees from Grand Valley State University, my teaching career began in the Grand Rapids Public Schools as a Special Education teacher, where I worked for 11 years.   I have been working for Livonia Public Schools at Garfield Elementary since 2003, both as a Special Education Resource Room teacher and as a Title I teacher.  More recently I was a third and fourth grade classroom teacher.  I have spent my entire career meeting the needs of students and staff, and have acted in many leadership roles along the way.   Mr. Green was an excellent mentor to me, and the Garfield staff has taught me so much.  Over the last two years, I have also been working toward my Leadership Certificate at Eastern Michigan University. 

I am very proud of my family.  My husband Rich and I have three daughters, currently two in college and one is a recent college graduate.  We spend our summers traveling, either by boat, or exploring the countryside by motorcycle.

My goal for your child will be to make sure that his/her academic and social/emotional needs are met.  Students at each grade level have specific characteristics and learning goals, and each student has individual needs.  Our goal as educators is to promote an environment where each student feels safe, respected, and valued, and to develop life long learners.

I am here to serve all stakeholders: students, parents, and staff.  Your child’s success depends on our collaboration.  We all need to work together to ensure the success of every child.  I look forward to further building relationships within this community, and watching your children grow.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with any concerns, questions, or comments.  I am excited to begin this year's journey together here at Garfield.

Paula R. Kohler