Carlos Gonzalez, Deputy Campus Director at the Browne Middle School in Chelsea, has been named one of 20 Aspiring Latino Leader Fellows for 2017 by Latinos For Education.
Latinos For Education’s mission is to develop, place and connect Latino leaders in the education sector. Their inaugural class of Leader Fellows will work together over the next eight months with the goal of breaking down barriers for Latino students and finding ways to increase access to excellent education. The Fellows themselves are a diverse group of educators and coordinators from nonprofits, schools and education programs around Massachusetts.
Gonzalez is in his third year with Citizen Schools. He served as an AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow at the Edwards Middle School in Boston before accepting a position as deputy campus director at the Browne.
“As a Teaching Fellow, one of my first roles was to help the English Language Learner (ELL) students in their classes,” Gonzalez says. “I found such joy in that work. As an ELL myself I was able to connect with them over the frustrations that they felt. I was part of their support system and I was able to work with their families.”
Part of his focus as a TF was on involving not just the student, but the family and the larger community. “In the Latino community, family plays a big part. So we’re thinking, how do we bring in the family, help them understand their student’s progress, their struggles, and the school system as a whole” he says. “This experience really increased my passion for working with ELL students.”
As a Deputy Campus Director, Gonzalez says he still draws on his relationships and experiences as a TF. “Having a similar native language helps me connect with overwhelmed or under-supported students at school. Being able to share the message of including family, getting the full student and full community involved, is important to me.”
We’re proud of Carlos and all he’s done to increase community participation on his campuses. We’re excited to see what he brings to the table as an Aspiring Latino Leader Fellow, too.