LJCA Mission Statement


The La Jolla Cluster Association is to promote and support excellence in education in all La Jolla public schools by:

  • Working collaboratively to meet the needs of our diverse student population through the K-12 school experience.

  • Preparing our students for college, careers and life by providing a rigorous, comprehensive, standards-based curriculum that includes technology, the visual and performing arts, physical education, and character education.



LJCA is an organization that serves the five La Jolla public schools: La Jolla High, Muirlands Middle, and Birdrock, La Jolla and Torrey Pines elementaries. The executive board consists of 10 parents (2 from each school), 10 teachers (2 from each school), and five principals. The board held its first meeting on April 6, 2010.


In creating the cluster association, the founders cited the following goals:

  •   to share ideas and resources.

  •   to identify common goals for K through 12.

  •   to build bridges between schools to ease transitions.

  •   to determine spending priorities.

  •   to have a unified voice when working with the district.

  •   to create an environment of unity instead of competition in our community.

  •   to help shape how clusters are formed and utilized throughout the district.


To volunteer, please visit the Contact Us page.




San Diego Unified is supportive of cluster organizations. In its "2020 Vision for Educational Excellence" statement, district leaders declared that in the year 2020 "schools and clusters will have increased authority to establish instructional strategies designed to assure the success of each student, and will be accountable for the results of those decisions."  They also promised that "schools will offer opportunities that increase the capacity of the communities to meet their own needs." And they declared that by the year 2020 "The primary role of central administration will be one of support for school sites." The district board announced an administrative restructuring in April 2010 that was designed in part to enable the district to better support clusters.

                 2019/2020 La Jolla Cluster Representatives

School Board Member:

Michael McQuary

Area Superintendent:

Mitzi Merino

Stephanie Teel, Mitzi's Assistant

Bird Rock Elementary:


Andi Frost

Teacher Reps:

Alisson Tomasulo

Parent Reps:

Jenn Beverage

Katie Zanoni

Kelsey Martin

La Jolla Elementary:


Stephanie Hasselbrink

Teacher Reps:

Nancy Rice

Aimee Lansky

Parent Reps:

Megan DeMott

Julie Hom

Torrey Pines Elementary:


Nona Richard

Teacher Reps:

Keri Riney

Liza Olmert

Amy Harp

Parent Reps:

Tania Rivera

Thien-Thanh Genovese

Muirlands Middle School:


Geof Martin

Teacher Reps:

Lori Trombley

Rob Tindall

Parent Reps:

Tracey Arminio

Adam Keller

La Jolla High School:


Chuck Podhorsky

Teacher Reps:

Howard Tenenbaum

Kerry Dill

Parent Reps:

Neha Bahadur

Meredith Novak

Fran Shimp



Nona Richard, Co-Chair

Chuck Podhorsky, Co-Chair

Neha Bahadur, Co-Chair

Adam Keller, Treasurer

Lori Trombley, Secretary

SEL/Community Education:

Tracey Arminio

Jenn Beverage

© 2023 by La Jolla Cluster Association