The Pacific Times | The Only Student-Run News Website in Natomas

Staff Profile: Jonathon Brinkmann

By Wayland Zhu
Staff Writer | The Pacific Times

Jonathan Brinkmann

NP3 High’s new assistant principal may look familiar to many students.

That’s because Jonathan Brinkmann started teaching at NP3 Middle School when this year’s seniors were 6th graders.

“Things are different now because these kids are now all young adults so there’s a different dynamic,” Brinkmann said. “I’m definitely appreciative on my end to have some sort of relationship because it helps for people to know who I am and for me to know who people are.”

Brinkmann worked as a school counselor at NP3 Middle School. As an assistant principal, he performs similar duties to the dean Shawn McGuire. Brinkmann also works to use restorative practices to strengthen the school’s culture.

“The best part about transitioning from NP3 Middle is knowing seniors that used to be in 6th or 7th grade when I first came to NP3 and having some sort of connection to them,” he said.  “There’s more work on building relationships now because you can’t just leave a relationship for three or four years, show back up, and be like ‘Hey, what’s up man.’”

Restorative practices are meant to help prevent and address behavioral disruption in a way that supports accountability. It does not punish the student and instead is based on building and healing relationships.

“I’m going to try to approach everything with the same upbeat and positive approach for all kids, no matter what grade they’re in, and try to treat everyone equally by supporting them,” Brinkmann said.

Brinkmann went to junior college at Butte College, playing football there. He then got a scholarship at Minnesota State University, developed an interest in psychology, and got a Bachelor’s in Psychology. He later went to graduate with a Master’s in Counseling and Human Resources Development at South Dakota State University.

Before working at NP3, Brinkmann worked in American Indian reservations implementing restorative justice practices with high school students. Brinkmann also worked in group homes with getting kids in South Dakota back into high school after they were kicked out of their households.

“I worked at Ukiah High School, Brookings High School, Marshal Middle, and at summer courses in Sioux Falls, SD, and on an American Indian reservation.”

Brinkmann moved back to California to work together in Oakland with juveniles, conducting home visits and case management.

Brinkmann said he found a passion in school counseling by working with kids at juvenile hall in Sacramento. He was hired as a school counselor for three years in Mendocino County and later at NP3 Middle School as a school counselor for six years.

Brinkmann enjoys golfing, going on runs, fishing, football, and spending time with his family. He also likes collecting Pokemon cards, Stranger Things, and the Harry Potter series.

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