Principal Designate Nasrin Matini: “A constant source of wisdom & leadership”
An elementary school student fidgets nervously as she waits for her admissions interview to start. Nasrin enters the room and smiles. “My name is Nasrin,” she says. “But you can call me 'Your Majesty!' The student’s anxiety melts away and the interview goes swimmingly.
When Linden’s current principal, Janice Gladstone, leaves after five successful years, Nasrin Matini will act as interim principal while the board of trustees embarks on a thoughtful search for new leadership.
Nasrin’s students and their parents know her as an incredible math teacher with a larger-than-life personality and an irreverent sense of humour.
Since 1999, Nasrin has taught senior mathematics at Linden, instilling a love of math in Linden students--even students who previously loathed the subject and considered themselves “not good at math.” She integrates real-world problem-solving, while helping her students develop confidence in their math skills and acquire valuable thinking skills for success far beyond the classroom.
What may be less well known to students and families is Nasrin’s leadership in all facets of Linden. She has rich experience and expertise in guidance, admissions, and human resources, and she manages Linden’s complex schedule as well as high school course option selection. Currently, she is teaching guidance and university preparation to the Grade 12 graduating class. There is not a storage cupboard or a quirky lock at Linden that Nasrin doesn’t know.
“Nasrin personifies dedication to Linden,” says former student Jessica Rochman Fowler, who graduated in 2005. “She is one of the school’s most vocal supporters, and a fierce advocate for faculty, staff, students, and families. She continually adapts to new challenges, and explores new opportunities to engage students and promote learning. Nasrin has inspired generations of Linden students to go outside their comfort zone to pursue opportunities they may not have otherwise explored.”
Faculty and staff alike value Nasrin’s mentorship. “Nasrin was one of the first people I met at Linden, and she put me at ease right away with her warmth and sense of humour,” said Janice. “She was a great support in my early days, guiding me through the ins and outs of Linden’s community and history.”
Nasrin has served as principal designate for the past 15 years, stepping in when the principal is absent, most recently when Janice was awarded Columbia University’s Klingenstein Fellowship and spent two weeks at a symposium out of town.
Bolstered by a highly effective board, leadership team, faculty, and staff, Nasrin will be well-supported to oversee a smooth transition.
“With Nasrin’s leadership, mentoring expertise, and institutional knowledge, I am confident that Linden will be in good hands through the transition to the next phase of leadership,” said Janice. “Linden’s faculty is stronger than it has ever been. The administrative team is functioning as a well-oiled machine. Our communications and support for new families stand out amongst our peer schools. I feel certain that families will continue receiving excellent support, and, most importantly, students will continue experiencing the highest quality Linden education.”
What are Nasrin’s priorities in the immediate term? “Our students are most important,” says Nasrin. “Linden’s high standard of education will not change.”
Equally, Nasrin understands the parent perspective; her daughter Tara graduated from Linden in 2005 and now enjoys a distinguished career in international development. “I share Janice’s deep caring and concern not only for our students, but for parents, and indeed our whole community,” says Nasrin. “I know many parents appreciate Janice’s openness and accessibility, and this will continue.”