Administration & Secretaries
Principal (Physical Education, Math, Electives)
My teaching experience started in 1995 at Dell H. Robison Middle School, where I taught both Orchestra and an English/Reading recovery class. While I was there, I took an active role as a leader on different committees and coached girls basketball for five years. I was appointed to Dean of Students at Brinley Middle School in February 2005 and then moved to Bob Miller Middle School in 2007. While at both middle schools, I took every opportunity to learn and grow as a leader. In January 2008, I was named the Assistant Principal at Liberty High School where I became the curriculum administrator. Three years ago, I moved to Desert Oasis High School where I continued my role in curriculum. Both high schools during that time saw a rise in graduation rates and an increase in college and career readiness.
Assistant Principal (Curriculum & Testing, Science, Special Education)
My name is Melissa Mendoza. I was born and raised in South Texas. I moved to the Henderson/Las Vegas area in 2003. In 2007, I was appointed the first and only Dean of Students at the newly re-built Burkholder Middle School. Soon after, I was appointed an Assistant Principal at Western HS and then I returned to the Henderson area, Brown JHS. In 2016, I was given the opportunity to “come home” to Burkholder MS. I enjoy vacationing to sunny destinations, scuba diving, recreational hiking, kayaking, reading, as well as spending time with family and friends. I am excited to be a part of your child's educational experience as well as being a Burkholder Jaguar.
Assistant Principal (Activities, Athletics, Attendance, Counseling, ELA, Student Success)
While originally from Southern California, Nevada is home for me. After receiving my Bachelor’s from UNLV, I was hired as an English teacher at Liberty High School where I had the privilege to, not only share my love for learning with my students, but I was also involved with and passionate about helping to collect, analyze, and respond to data to improve student achievement. After receiving my Master's in Educational Policy and Leadership from UNLV, I began working on my Doctorate in Public Policy. I am a big believer in the concept of “servant leadership,” and I am dedicated to giving back to the community that has raised me. I am thrilled to serve as a partner in your child’s education!
Assistant Principal Secretary (Banking)
Hello Jaguars! My name is Belinda Smith and I'm the new PE aide. I'm originally from Santa Maria, California. I graduated from SMHS in 1992, I attended Allan Hancock Junior College where I received 2 Associates degrees and played Softball for 2 years. I was lucky enough to have been offered a full ride to Cal Poly San Luis Obispo to play Softball. There, I received my BA in PE and Kinesiology. I got married in 1997 and we moved to San Francisco so my husband Michael could finish his degree. While there I attended Cal State Hayward and received another BA in Liberal Studies with a minor in Early Childhood Education. We moved to Nevada in 2002 during the dot com crash and here is where I had my twins Sydney and Tristan who are now 11th graders at Coronado HS, Logan is a 7th grader and Grayson a 1st grader. I’ve been a stay-at-home mom off and on the last 17 years. I taught GED at the Women’s and Men’s prison for 3 years. The last 2 years I’ve been the PE aide at Sunrise Acres ES and loved it. I was the Long term sub for Girl’s PE in 2009 here at Burkholder MS and when the position opened up as an Aide, I had to get on board. I’m so excited to be back! In my down time, which isn’t often, I play tennis, softball, pickleball, read and watch anything on Netflix, root for the Dodgers, Mike Trout, Vegas Golden Knights, UCLA softball and the 49’ers, (soon to be a Raider Fan). I look forward to this school year and helping our students.