Meet our Principal!
Degrees and Certifications:
Mr. Blake Baird
Welcome to ACES High School and Mukilteo Virtual Academy –
I am so excited to work closely with you to identify and pursue your best path towards growing into a happy, healthy, thriving 30-year-old and beyond! In our choice programs, we specialize in personalization through a multifaceted educational model that works best when students are motivated and accountable for their learning – with hands-on support from our incredible staff, be it in person or online.
Throughout my career, meeting the needs of diverse learners has always been my home. I am passionate about empowering educators with the tools they need to ensure that every student is given the opportunity and resources they need to grow into happy, healthy, adults – recognizing that there are many pathways to success. Equity, authenticity, and restoration are the core values that drive my practice - so much so that my first three tattoos were designed as dedicated, visible, daily reminders to myself of each.
Prior to coming to Mukilteo, I spent 7 years as the principal and head learner of Leaders in Learning High School, as well as several other programs, both virtual and in-person. I began my educational career as the founding science teacher for the Bellevue Big Picture School after spending several years studying suspended animation at Fred Hutch. I earned my administrative credential from the Danforth Educational Leadership Program at UW, after having earned both my Masters in Teaching and my Bachelor's in Chemistry there as well.
In keeping with my passion for equity (and my personal philosophy of being a continual learner), I also attended the International Institute of Restorative Practices to earn my license as an independent Restorative Practices Practitioner, Facilitator, Consultant, and Trainer. I continue to attend and speak at conferences on the subject regularly. My family and I are the proud caretakers of two cats, a dog, and far too many condiments. When I am not working to improve our educational system, you can usually find me foraging for gourmet mushrooms with my family in the woods (no poisonings yet), preparing elaborate meals for loved ones, blacksmithing, or reading!
I look forward to this school year and am excited to get started working with our students, staff, and families. Go Tigers!