I was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico and attended schools right here in the beautiful North Valley. After high school, I enlisted into the military and served my country as an Airman in the United States Air Force. After returning to Albuquerque, I began my undergraduate and graduate studies in Clinical Social Work at New Mexico Highlands University.
During my graduate program, I had a strong desire to serve our youth in the schools, so began my journey as a School Social Worker in Special Education. As my passion grew, I transitioned into an administrative role serving students as the Director of Special Education. This is where I was able to use my skills as a social worker to grow and build a program to support students with specific needs.
My advocacy for student success led me to obtain my certificate in Educational Administrative Leadership. Serving as an Assistant Principal with a background in social work afforded me the opportunity to focus on a student-centered model at a macro level. While I love applying my work at an administrative level, I also value family deeply. For this reason, I decided to go back to my roots of working with students as a school social worker which allows me to balance my work and commit time to my family.
Speaking of Family…
I married my high school sweetheart, Mario and we have two amazing children, Gabby and Mario Jr. We have two fur babies; one large German Sheppard, Charlotte, and one tiny, miniature pinscher/chihuahua mix, Sophie.
Our favorite thing to do as a family is to go camping! In other free time, we enjoy hanging out with our family, relaxing at home, playing board games and fixing puzzles!
As I transitioned out of my previous school, I knew I needed to find a school that aligned with my Social Work core values, and most importantly my personal values. I wanted a school that encouraged academic inquiry and growth, but not just in core contents.
I wanted a school that respected and encouraged diversity, tradition and community; a school that operated from a student-centered, system-based model – supporting the whole child. Menaul School is just that!Shannon Baldonado
I am excited to begin my journey at Menaul School and hope to make meaningful contributions to its mission and values. I look forward to integrating into this wonderful community!