Our Administration
Lisa Creaser
Lisa Creaser, Principal
Patsy Staniszeski, Administrative Assistant to Principal Creaser
480-632-4739 x2002

I hail from Nebraska and am proud to say I am a Husker!  After graduation I moved to Arizona and began my career in Gilbert, but I also seized opportunities in Colorado and Mesa, where I served as a teacher, an Instructional Specialist, and an administrator.  I was hired as the principal of Highland Junior High School for the 2017 - 2018 school year, and I have loved returning home to GPS!

Away from work I enjoy many things with friends and family, including board games, community service, and traveling. I am also blessed to have two beautiful little granddaughters who live nearby. What a joy!

Thank-you for partnering with us. We are honored to spend our days with your children, and we’re looking forward to what they will accomplish this year.   Welcome to the 2018 - 2019 school year!

School Opened:  1998
Student Enrollment: 1250
Grades: 7th-8th

A. Basques
Arick Basques,  Assistant Principal
Barbara Escamilla, Administrative Assistant to Assistant Principal Basques 
480-632-4739 X2001

I have lived in Arizona for over 20 years and graduated from Red Mountain High School in Mesa. I started my career in education in 2003 by becoming a habilitation provider for students with special needs. I earned my BA degree in Elementary Education from Arizona State University in 2007 and my MA degree in Educational Leadership from Northern Arizona University in 2012.  I am a lifelong learner and do my best to instill that mentality in all students.

Some of my specific duties as Highland Junior High’s Assistant Principal include monitoring academics, attendance and discipline in 8th grade, athletic director and testing coordinator. Most recently, I was an assistant principal of Gilbert High School where I supported teachers and students by offering valuable insight in classroom management and instruction. I’ve also had the privilege of working as the Assistant Principal of Canyon Valley School. Before becoming an assistant principal, I taught 8th grade science students at Highland Junior High School.

As a parent of two young children, I see the value of education and family.  It is important to celebrate achievements together and I am confident that there will be plenty of opportunities for those joyful occasions.

H. Preston
Heather Preston, Dean of Students
480-632- 4739 x2002

As the Dean of Students, I will be working primarily with 8th-grade discipline, Student Activities, and Security. I am extremely humbled and excited to join the Highland Junior High administrative team. I look forward to working with this amazing team of teachers to provide the Highland Hurricanes exceptional educational experiences and a strong foundation for the future.

I got my start in education as a teacher’s aide in a preschool classroom while I was attending UTEP for my degree in early childhood education. I taught in elementary for 11 years. I got my masters in Ed Leadership in 2008 through NAU. Since then I have been an assistant principal in K-8 and a 7/8 middle school in Higley District. I was a principal in GPS at Houston Elementary for 2 years before coming to work at Highland Junior High.

I was born in El Paso, Texas but I lived in many military bases during my childhood.I am married to my high school sweetheart, Doug, who I first met in senior year English class. Our son, Ryan, is 23 years old and our daughter, Phoebe, is almost 18 and heading to ASU. Music is essential in our household and everyone (except me) can play multiple instruments.  My hobbies include painting and playing board games at the kitchen table.  I love reading and technology and I always want to learn new ways to help students to get the most from both.

Kathy Doucette, Attendance 480-632-4739 x2330

Melissa Kiilehua, PRIDE 480-632-4739 x2335

Mary Rinsem, Health Office 480-632-4739 x2322
Karen Sanchez, Receptionist 480-632-4739 x2000

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