Principal's Message

Hi Curie Community,

What an honor to lead as principal of Curie Elementary School and to be a part of our UC Cluster! I’m simply thrilled beyond words to be part of this wonderful school community and to collaborate with you side-by-side to provide our students the richest educational experience possible.


A quick background about me: I graduated from San Diego State in 2000 with a B.A. in Communications, emphasis in Public Relations. Over the years I earned my first M.A. in Education, with an emphasis in literacy, and my second M.A. in Education Administration. I am credentialed in English Language Arts, Social Sciences, and Multiple Subjects (Elementary). I began my career in education as an English Language Arts and Visual Arts teacher at Lewis Middle school in 2005, then taught English and Social Studies, with an inclusion of arts into my instruction, at Pacific Beach Middle School from 2007-2019. The humanities are my love! After 14 years as a middle school teacher, I served as the proud Associate Principal of Morse High School for three years, and there oversaw the departments of Special Education, Social Sciences, Math, VAPA, CCTE, and iHigh.


Coming from the educational world of secondary, I know well  the academic expectations of middle and high school, and the collaboration it takes to align our expectations vertically within the cluster to prepare our students for their eventual next steps. I have a lot of experience in building strong partnerships with feeder schools, and know this will be a top priority for me within the UC High Cluster. I have an instructional background in the International Baccalaureate Programme from my twelve years of experience at PB Middle, and my educational beliefs are grounded in providing our students with meaningful units of inquiry that are civics-based and encourage student engagement within the community. This involves real-world enrichment opportunities within the curriculum that allow students to collaborate with one another, have multiple choices available to demonstrate their learning, publish their work, and ultimately, to make personal connections to the curriculum. This is my passion in education: true student- centered learning that is relevant outside the walls of the classroom, and to instill within our students the love of learning that I was the lucky recipient of as a child. I want every one of our students to look back on these years with the fondness, love, and nostalgia that I feel about my elementary years.


You will soon find that I am a believer in the power of teams, and I look forward to carrying on the momentum Curie already has with its current organizations, as well to forge new partnerships for future ideals we wish to achieve. I know the strength of Curie’s family and community engagement, and working with the parent and community as partners to provide the most magical educational experience we can for our students is something that I am most looking forward to. Synergy ignites only through collaboration, and together we will provide all the best for our students. Curie Elementary is truly a dream school for me, and I can’t wait to see what we achieve together!


Ashley Duren

Principal, Curie Elementary

[email protected]

(858) 221-5500

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