As an administrator I believe that all people that come through are door feel safe, respected and that their cultural backgrounds are valued. For this reason I believe all teachers should be aware of their own culture as well as the culture of their students. With this in mind, teachers need to receive professional development that will allow them to become culturally sensitive and aware. Along with this, teachers will also receive professional development on appropriate ways to communicate with each other, the students and the community. My second non-negotiable would also be to provide students with a curriculum that challenges them to be creative, critical thinkers, and collaborative. For this reason, I believe teachers need to develop curriculum that promotes and expects students to develop these skills and thus teachers need to have enough expertise on this. I would provide teachers with professional development that would create expert teachers in the field. My final non-negotiable is to have this curriculum be rigorous for our students and based on research-based strategies that will promote the excellence of our students.
After analyzing my last two years as a leader at my school I have come to the conclusion that my leadership style has developed to become a democratic leader. When working with teachers I believe the teachers are the experts on their students and for that reason I believe that they are the most equipped to make decisions on what is best for their students. For this reason, I know the best way to achieve the common goal for our students is to have as much input as possible from the people who know them the most. Along with this, I also believe as a democratic leader I also have become a distributive leader because I seek my staff to work as a team and that their collective power will provide the results we need for our students. I alone cannot make impactful changes without the staff taking on some of the responsibility and creating the change. Finally, I also believe that I have created a system at my school where teachers are required to produce certain things in order to receive certain rewards such as, completing a set of task in order for them to be able to attend a conference.
I have been teaching for 8 years. I am credentialled in BCLAD Multiple Subject as well as Special Education Mild Moderate. I have taught grades 7th and 8th. I have had a number of different teaching assignments including English, World History and U.S. History. I have accepted teacher leadership responsibilities in the school including IT Specialist, Social Studies Coach, Technology Coach as well as leading part of the WASC team. I currently hold a Bachelors of Arts from the University of California Santa Cruz in Global Economics with an emphasis in the European Union. I have been education for 11 years, before becoming an educator I was a stockbroker for Merrill Lynch where I was integral to the development of an automated Spanish system for our clients. As a teacher I have worked with technology for 8 years. My first position was a technology specialist at Juvenile Community Court Schools in National City California, where I was responsible for a computer lab as well as providing support in subjects such as Government and Economics to graduating seniors.
Since then, I’ve have taught at a dual language school, both 7th grade and 8th grade English and History, where I lead the pilot program of technology implementation in the classroom by integrating chromebooks. I currently hold a BCLAD credential as well as a preliminary special education credential in mild/moderate education from San Diego State University.
Recently, I have been part of the WASC committee for our middle school where I lead a group of teachers in the development of our WASC accreditation along with other colleagues. For the last two years I have served both as a BTSA mentor and IT Specialist for both the elementary school and middle school. As the IT Specialist my responsibilities include developing the technology plan for our school as well as reviewing the schools technology policy for both staff and students. I am also responsible for maintaining, updating and creating policy for over 675 chromebooks, 189 iPads, 60 Macs, several PCs and servers. As IT Specialist I also provide professional development for over 30 teachers on software such as typing club, achieve 3000, Google classroom and classroom technology policy. Finally, as the IT Specialist at our school I am part of the administrative team and have been responsible for the development of school wide policies on testing, data collection, professional development opportunities for our teachers outside of technology.
I came to this country in 4th grade not knowing the language or anyone outside my immediate family. The neighborhood where we first came to was not the best. After about six months I was able to pick up the language due to an amazing teacher who not only promoted the learning of English but also the development a student’s ability to be critical thinker. Along with that, this teacher included a global view to education. I clearly remember our teacher bringing coffee table books to the classroom and allowing us to pick any object in them to recreate. This allowed me to see the world in a different way, to imagine beyond my situation. Through this teacher I recreated African mask, Aztec sacrificial knives and many other things. That first teacher made me feel a welcome member of my school community when I needed it and because of him and many other teachers that came along I was able to dream about going to college, to travel further than anyone else in my family, to live in foreign countries, in short I became a global citizen.
Years later, when I was beyond college I returned to my old neighborhood to discover what had happened to friends who weren’t as lucky as me. I saw that with out great teachers to educate them, to open their eyes to the world, they had become what most kids in that neighborhood end up in, incarcerated. Knowing that a great education allowed me to become the global citizen I am today, has cemented the importance of education in the development of innovating global citizens.
I believe all children need and deserve an education that requires critical thinking, encourages creativity, is centered on collaboration and develops communication. Students also deserve an education where their ideas and cultural backgrounds are valued and promoted. In this new global setting students need to develop skills that go far beyond memorizing facts. They need to find creative solutions to the issues that affect us today and in the future. Through collaborations and education students will develop the skills that will make them competitive and contributing members in a global society. Education is also the place that will create in them the drive to become 21st century scholars.