Degrees and Certifications:

Bessma Garmo

Dear Montgomery Middle School families,

My name is Bessma Garmo and I am so excited to introduce myself as the new principal at Montgomery Middle school. I am honored to have been selected to lead this outstanding community of learners at Cajon Valley Union school district, which is known for its dedication to excellence and ensuring our students are happy, in healthy relationships and on a path to gainful employment.

For the past two years, I served as an assistant principal at Vista High School. Prior to that, I had spent most of my life in East county having attended Monte Vista High School, taught math at Grossmont, Steele Canyon, and El Cajon Valley High Schools, and later Emerald Middle School and Greenfield Middle School.  I am well versed in the Cajon Valley student body and culture.  I speak English, Arabic, Chaldean and Spanish and I am confident that I can communicate with virtually 100% of our student body in their own language.

Over the past 20 years, I have worked as a teacher, coordinator, and administrator, but I consider my most important job to be that of a student advocate.   Students are our biggest assets and as a principal, I pledge to all our students that my mission will be to get to know each of you and your parents and guardians on a personal basis.  I look forward to getting to know our students’ strengths, interests and values. I will celebrate their successes, small and large. I will encourage them every day and let them know they are valued and have a special place in our school community.  My goal is to ensure that all children are healthy, happy and safe, so they may learn as much as they can.

I will get to know our wonderful teachers, administrators, counselors and all MMS staff and work as one cohesive team to enrich our students’ experiences.  Our mission is to collectively and collaboratively build a safe community that is based on positive connections and character development where learners engage in a modern, rigorous education that empowers them to focus on skills, growth, and their future. 

Our vision for Montgomery is to enhance our efforts to create a community of learners and to empower our students to reach their full potential.  As an immigrant from a war torn country of Iraq, I will use my platform to inspire all students to reach their American Dream.  We are all fortunate to live in a country where we are safe and respected and virtually anyone can achieve their dreams.  My message to our Montgomery students is to aim high and dream big.  If a little girl from a war torn country who had to learn English as a third language can do it, so can each one of you. 

My pledge is to have a more cohesive school staff, student body and community.  We must all work together and come together to succeed. To ensure these things happen, I pledge to have an open-door policy where any student, teacher, parent or any other stakeholder can come to my office and discuss ways to improve our systems.  I pledge to learn about our students’ diversities and encourage community leaders and business professionals to become more involved in our students’ success. I had done this successfully in the past at Greenfield Middle school where I invited professionals from various walks of life to come to the school, speak to our students and inspire them to reach for higher goals.

I pledge to work collaboratively and as a team to make our students happy and successful. When my kids were attending Vista Grande Elementary and Hillsdale Middle School, I encouraged them to be involved with Cajon Valley’s Got Talent, Ted Talks and other social engagements. I would like to see a more robust approach to student and parent engagement whereby students and their parents/guardians become more involved in school activities, PTSA, sports, theater, dance, and other social events. 

I would like to see all students engage in a modern curriculum that will prepare them for the World of Work, based on their strengths, interests, and values. We will work hard to help students excel in reading, writing, listening, speaking, and mathematics and hopefully, we can be known as a distinguished school.  Our school district has all the tools necessary for each of our students to succeed and be ready for high school curriculum. 

When I am not at school, I enjoy spending time with my husband, Robert, and my twin boys, Preston and Jayden. I also enjoy cooking, hiking, reading and staying current with best practices in education. I feel that I will always be a lifelong learner. I am blessed to be in this position and I look forward to getting to know each of you and working with you this coming school year.   


All the best,

Bessma Garmo

MMS Principal