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The Student News Site of Riviera Preparatory School

The Riviera Press

The Student News Site of Riviera Preparatory School

The Riviera Press

The Student News Site of Riviera Preparatory School

The Riviera Press

Locke-d Into Riviera

Meet our new director
Locke-d Into Riviera

As the 2023-2024 school year begins, we are entering yet another “Rivi-ERA” filled with new classes, teachers, memories, and especially new admin.  Last year, Mr. Cohen stepped down from his position as Director and sold Riviera to the International School Partnership (ISP). We warmly welcomed our new director, Dr. Kara Locke. She worked with ISP for about a year and looks forward to working with our students to elevate our school to the next level.

Before dipping her toes in the administrative world, Dr. Locke was a high school English teacher. She taught primarily 9th and 12th grade at one of the all-girls Sacred Hearts Schools in D.C., named Stoneridge. During that time, Dr. Locke attended Johns Hopkins and received her master’s degree to become assistant dean of students for Stoneridge’s 12th grade class. However, she wanted to push herself even more. She went on to work for the SEED schools, which are public college prep schools for at-risk youth. Locke mentions that “their mission was to ensure that all kids from under-resourced families had the opportunity to go off to college”. Eventually, she left her hometown to start the first SEED school in Miami, their fourth school in the country. In total, she dedicated 16 years to helping the company.

After ISP contacted Dr. Locke about Riviera, she immediately knew her goal was to give our students more opportunities to expand their knowledge and succeed. Currently, she is working with ISP and the rest of the administration to implement a study abroad program for the students at Riviera. The program is named ILOS (International Learning Opportunities for Students) and incorporates a variety of studies for the kids to explore. This program offers diverse subjects, with Dr. Locke sharing, “art students engaging in a global curriculum, a chess class similar to the art one with kids from all over the world, and a future filmmakers class” and that she “hopes to integrate it within the school calendar and have it be an option for kids to sign up for within the next school year or so”. In addition, she hopes to get more input from the student body and make some fun additions to the school.

While her professional accomplishments and hopes for our school are significant , it is equally important to learn who our director is outside of school. Dr. Locke has many hobbies and passions she enjoys in her day-to-day life. Given that her husband owns a gym, the couple is inclined towards an active lifestyle and prefers to be outside as much as possible. Her favorite sport is tennis, and ironically enough, half our school’s property happens to be tennis courts. She also hopes to take advantage of the amazing weather in Florida to explore all of Miami. Although, as a mom of three kids younger than six, sometimes doing activities can be hard. “My kids are big animal lovers so a family “tradition” has become going to Farmhouse Miami. You get to pet the goats and I think there is even goat yoga”, says Locke.

One thing Dr. Locke is passionate about, that we can all side with her on, is food. She refers to herself as a major “foodie”, and wholeheartedly believes that everyone should make an effort to always try new things. Her favorite of all time is sushi and even made sure to expose her children to it at a young age. Dr. Locke claims that food exposure is crucial and that there is a motto in her house, “you have to try two before you say ew”. She took this passion and even applied it to her job when working at the SEED school. “A big thing was that I wanted the students at SEED to have access to healthy and delicious food as other young people do”, says Locke. Now, she wants to bring her passion to Riviera. With the help of Sage Dining’s main chef, she plans to enact a more diverse menu that contains meals that the students want.

We don’t want to spoil her other plans for the future, but there are definitely going to be things to look forward to as the school year progresses. If you see Dr. Locke throughout the school day, don’t be afraid to say hi!

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About the Contributor
Sienna Fakiri, Editor in Chief
Sienna Fakiri is a senior and second year student who is also our Editor-In-Chief. Her pastimes include spending time on the water whether it is sailing or paddleboarding.  Tired of college applications, you can often quote her saying “I need a nap”. She can’t wait to discover what colleges she gets into, but before that she wants to partake in senior events.
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