Two Latino educators have been selected to serve as Teaching Ambassador Fellows for the upcoming 2012-2013 school year, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced Tuesday.
Only 12 teachers were selected from a national pool of 625 applicants from traditional public, charter, alternative and private schools across a variety of academic disciplines and settings. The program is in its fifth year and allows outstanding teachers to contribute their expertise to critical areas of national educational policy issues. Approximately six of this year’s fellows will work full-time for the U.S. Department of Education headquarters in Washington, D.C. Five of the remaining Teaching Ambassador Fellows will work part-time as Classroom Fellows, while a sixth will work full-time in the department’s Seattle regional office.
Jennifer Bado-Aleman, an English Department Resource Teacher at Gaithersburg High School in Montgomery County, Maryland, will be among the Teaching Ambassador Fellows working at the U.S. Department of Education Headquarters. She is charged with spearheading middle-school reform in the Office of the Secretary.
Joining Bado-Aleman is Marciano Gutierrez, a social studies teacher at Alta Vista High School, an alternative school in Mountain View, California. Gutierrez, a reform activist who has helped lead Bay Area teaching reform efforts, will work on teacher quality issues.
“I have made it my life’s goal to provide a quality education to children, especially to those from neighborhoods similar to my own. As a teacher, I hope to accomplish this at a micro-level by providing my students with quality instruction and high expectations,” said Gutierrez of his award. “As a Washington Teaching Ambassador Fellow, I hope to accomplish this at a macro-level by informing policy which helps attract and retain our best teachers in schools which serve our most vulnerable student populations.”
The new class of Ambassador Fellows were acknowledged by Duncan as being entrusted with a goal of national significance.
“It is critical that we work collaboratively with teachers to develop policies that will truly transform and elevate the teaching profession,” Duncan said. “I am proud of the work our Teaching Ambassadors have done to talk with and listen to other teachers across the country as well as the direct input they have given staff. I look forward to working with this year’s Teaching Ambassador Fellows to take this good work to the next level.”