Principal's Message

Principal's Message

December 2018


Dear Parents and Students:


Hello Vanguard Families!  I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself.  My name is Jill Katevas and I am the proud new principal here at El Modena High School.  I was born and raised in Long Beach, California and earned my bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Long Beach State, and later earned my teaching credential from Chapman University. I have proudly served as a public educator in the Orange Unified School District for the past 20 years. Though education is a second career for me, I learned early on that my ability to work with others, think on my feet, and persevere through all challenges are what ultimately determined my level of success. Thus, I am committed to fostering these skills in all students.

I am truly honored to support the service of the incredibly dedicated staff of El Modena High School as they support our students.  In Vanguard Nation, we hold the philosophy that every student matters. As a corroboration of this belief, El Modena was recently awarded the title of Best Public School in Orange County by the readers of Parenting OC Magazine. This award was granted in 2017 over 600 other public elementary, middle, and high schools in Orange County. Further, El Modena also has four teachers who were nominated by the readers of the magazine as top teachers in the county in the past three years.

Given my prior experience in the corporate world, it is very rewarding to work at a school that provides the largest Career Technical Education Program in the district.  El Modena offers students a wide variety of vocational pathways: Arts, Media, and Entertainment; Biomedical and Health Services; Information and Communications Technology; Education and Child Development; Business Management; Engineering; Public Services; Hotel and Tourism Management; and Legal. We also offer two pathways that are completely unique within our district:  Culinary Arts and Construction.

I intend to maintain our commitment to ensuring all students are ready for life beyond high school. Our intensive college preparatory programs include AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination), 28 AP classes including AP Capstone, CTP (Collaborative Technical Partnership), Dual Enrollment with Santiago Community College and Articulation with 6 other colleges, Project Lead the Way Bio Medical, and Upward Bound. There are truly a plethora of opportunities for students to discover who they are and what they want to do. I am looking forward to continuing to sustain and enhance these programs.

As the new principal, it is exciting to be a part of so many wonderful learning experiences available to students.  However, upon meeting the staff members, they all told me the same thing:  the best thing about El Modena High School is our kids.  My own experience validates this statement.  It will truly be my honor to serve the El Modena community and support our students in their high school journey.


Mrs. Jill Katevas


El Modena High School