Damonte looks to make improvements as new principal


LAUSD Office of Communications

Pia Damonte hopes to make improvements as the new principal at DPMHS.

Parampreet Aulakh

As Principal Deb Smith sets off for retirement, Daniel Pearl Magnet High School’s new principal is Pia Damonte.

“I am thrilled and honored that I am going to be your new principal,” Damonte said. “I have worked with Daniel Pearl for the last four years as a counseling coordinator and I have always known that it’s a school that promotes respect, diversity and understanding to all.”

Damonte has been working with the Los Angeles Unified School District for over 19 years in a variety of roles. She has been a pre-kindergarten-12 counseling coordinator at Local District Northwest since 2015 and previously she was the assistant principal at Taft High School. Prior to her administrative roles, she was a Spanish teacher at Polytechnic High School from 2001 to 2013.

“I love being able to help and support my schools and the staff I work with,” Damonte said. “I am very grateful for all of the opportunities I have had while in education.”

To become eligible for a principal position, Damonte had to go through the Aspiring Principals Program. The program was able to prepare her with all of the necessary training and credentials she needed to become a principal.

“My desire is to serve as a facilitator for improvement,” Damonte said. “The experiences in the multiple roles I have had over the last 19 years in education have provided me with a strong instructional background, extensive knowledge of state and district policy with a wide range of resources to support a school’s vision and goals.”