Dr. Ahmad in front of a new school mural of a butterfly

Dr. Zarina Ahmad, Principal

“PAES is a place where all students can thrive.”

It is with love and appreciation, that after 15 years of being the proud principal at Piedmont Avenue Elementary School, and after 30 years of employment with OUSD, I announce my departure. Your trust in me as the school leader has been the greatest gift and I truly enjoyed serving the Piedmont Avenue School community. You treated me with respect and kindness and many of you have become like family. Your children, the most precious people on the planet, are beautiful and eager to learn. Being with them has brought me so much joy. I will miss you all.

As I depart I do have a few requests:

  • I ask all parents/guardians to make sure your children read daily. Take them to the library, Marcus Books,Target and book giveaways. Read with them at least 4-5 days a week for just 20-30 minutes. It really does make a difference.
  • I ask you to help your children learn math facts (grades K-5: addition, substraction; grades 3-5: multiplication, division). Learnnig mathematic is important and should be fun. You can make learning math facts fun with games, such as with a deck of cards.
  • Be patient with your children and always simply help them if they make mistakes. Never put them down. I believe elementary school success is the key to your children’s academic and social future. Encourage and motivate them to do their best.
  • Finally, please limit web access, limit screen time, and monitor children on the phones.
    Parents, you hold the power to shape your children’s future.

Our teachers and staff at Piedmont Avenue are an awesome team. They are caring, intelligent and kind people who come to work to support your students I am happy to announce that almost all are returning next year. Congratulations to Mrs. Kristi Hertel on her well deserved retirement at 25 years with OUSD!

Piedmont Avenue Elementary made growth on all of our iReady end of the year reading and math assessments and our teachers and school community should be proud as we collaboratively celebrate the success of our students. Great job everyone! I appreciate you all.

The next journey of my career will be as the Program Director for Leadership Development with the Alameda County Office of Education. In addition, I will work with REACH University as an Associate Professor teaching the Administrative Credentialing courses. My goal will be to support new school leaders. No matter where I go, I will fondly remember my time at Piedmont Avenue.

June 30, 2024 will be my last official day working with OUSD. Our Network Superintendent, Leroy Gaines, has been informed of my departure and has began the seach for the next principal.

As an Oakland native and resident, it has been my pleasure to serve my community and support students, families, community members and fellow educators in my city.

Thank you for your love and respect.

Peace and Blessings,
Dr. Zarina Ahmad, Principal 
[email protected]