Welcome to the Teaching & Learning Department. Teaching & Learning supports instructional programs and strategic curriculum planning at the elementary and high school level. Teaching & Learning provides leadership support for educators and school leaders and facilitates growth opportunities for district staff to transform instructional practice.
Administrative Assistant, Teaching & Learning
Phone: Ext. 3405
As the new director of teaching and learning for the district since 2021, Dr. van Wijk’s goal is to craft the best possible learning experience for the students in the community.
“Working with all the district’s stakeholders, we want to bring all that collaborative energy together and that knowledge together so that we can then turn around and put that out there for our students in a really awesome way,” she says. “That is what I think my job is, pedagogy, curriculum, support for principals. Whatever is going to provide awesome experiences for our students. It’s a big job.”
After spending 14 years as a teacher and administrator in the south Puget Sound area, van Wijk moved to Whatcom County to serve as the principal at Bellingham’s Cordata Elementary School. With her husband a native of the Netherlands and her a native Texan, “when we were moving to Whatcom County, we knew we wanted to be in Lynden,” she says. “It reminds me of that really traditional American feel and the farming communities of Texas, and the Dutch influence is amazing for him.”
“We love Lynden,” van Wijk says. “My husband is deaf, and community is really important to him and we feel we are part of a community here. Working here until I retire is a dream.”
Working with administrators and teachers to focus on collaboration offers a key role of van Wijk, creating synergy from the difference perspectives, ideas and skillsets in order to ensure Lynden students have the best possible outcomes. Working with Kelly Hoekstra in the teaching and learning office, the two have concentrated on professional development. The office is also heavily involved in curriculum adoption in all subject areas K-12, ensuring there is a plan for every subject area while leveraging the collaborative practices.
“We want this to be the hub for teaching and learning for our district,” van Wijk says. “When people walk in, they know what we are about and feel welcomed here.”