Mr.Gizzo finds home at PHS


Ginger Kondzela, Staff Writer

   Headed into the administration office, students might see a new Assistant Principal. Mike Gizzo is the newest addition to the administrative team.

   Gizzo has always been interested in education, but his path to Poway High has not been straightforward. In his early twenties, he owned a soccer academy in South Africa, having played soccer in high school and college.  “That was my escape, my passion,” Gizzo said. Working with young players from the states and from South Africa, he put himself into the culture, learned as much as possible, and enjoyed the experience. 

   Even then his time for teaching had not come, in high school he always wanted to be a teacher, but he ended up going to business school. The decision to pursue teaching was a spontaneous one when he was working in business, Gizzo admits.  “One day sitting in my office I thought “I want to go teach,” went to my boss and said “I quit”,” he said. Gizzo then  entered a master’s program and got a teaching credential. “I never looked back. It was the best decision I’ve ever made,” Gizzo said.  

   Gizzo has worked in the district, working on CTE Pathways, and as a tech and innovation coach. As an innovation coach Gizzo would sit in on classes and co-teach, “Our job was to support the mindful integration of technology into a classroom to benefit students and teachers,” Gizzo said. Gizzo’s team also helped usher PUSD through online and hybrid learning. While still working at the district office, Gizzo worked with administration, teachers and staff from Poway High. 

   Gizzo has looked forward to coming to PHS for a while, “Poway [High School] has a wonderful sense of community, we have so many multi-generational families that are poway alumni, people who are so glad to be a Titan,” Principle Nash is thrilled to now have Gizzo on his team, “Mr. Gizzo comes to us and brings a lot of energy and a  lot of awareness around career technical education. There are few people who are going to work as hard to make students realize their passions as Mr. Gizzo,” Nash said.

   Gizzo has almost 20 years of experience in working in education and he hopes his legacy will move toward more student-controlled learning. He is currently working towards developing the Level 3-4 for the Construction pathway, “I hope I can move our site toward student voice and ownership that makes learning real and relevant for students. That would be a really powerful thing to have left for our students,” Gizzo said.