The Buckeye Valley Local School District announced Monday that Buckeye Valley Principal Brian Orrenmaa was recently awarded the 2020 Virginia Association of Elementary School Principals School Bell Award. Orrenmaa joined Buckeye Valley Local Schools in the summer of 2020 and leads the staff at Buckeye Valley West Elementary.
The award is presented annually to Virginia school-based administrators who are members of VAESP. Nominees are to have made significant contributions to their schools, school systems, state association, national association and/or other educational organization.
Prior to arriving at Buckeye Valley, Orrenmaa was principal at George Mason Elementary School in Alexandria, Virginia. While at George Mason, Orrenmaa focused on strategic planning, curriculum alignment, support services and facility improvement, while implementing the Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS), with an emphasis on students experiencing an achievement gap.
Other key efforts attributed to Orrenmaa included establishing and reinforcing buildingwide behavioral expectations and overseeing an expansion of the talented and gifted program. He also championed the growth of the schools award-winning music program, which resulted in 100% of the fourth and fifth graders participating in band or orchestra. During his tenure at George Mason, the school underwent both an expansion and several renovation projects.
In addition to being at the helm of George Mason, he served the city of Alexandria and several educational organizations. He was an appointed commissioner, representing Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) on the Children, Youth and Families Collaborative Commission. He also served as the zone director for the National Association of Elementary School Principals, where he facilitated collaboration and networking between education professionals in the ACPS and the Arlington Public Schools, all in an effort to bridge communication and build upon professional knowledge and expertise of the education professionals across city lines. In the spring of 2019, Orrenmaa’s professional success and tenacity earned him recognition by the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce as a “40 Under 40” honoree.
Buckeye Valley Superintendent Andy Miller reacted to the news of Orrenmaa’s award: “We knew Brian was an excellent principal when he was hired last summer. His receiving the School Bell Award from the VAESP is impressive and simply confirms this fact.”
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