She immigrated to the US with little English and a 7th grade education, but now she's a teacher of the year

Isela Lieber, a former English learner who now teaches English and English as a Second Language at James Monroe High School, was named today by state Superintendent Tom Torlakson as one of five California Teachers of the Year.

An immigrant from Ecuador who came to the U.S. with only a seventh-grade education and very little knowledge of the English language, Lieber said she strongly identifies with her students, leading by example and sharing her personal story.

“I want to make a difference in the students I serve,” Lieber said. “I tell them that I studied hard and I worked hard and I have been able to achieve something, and that I believe they can do the same thing.”

In addition to her work in the classroom, Lieber sponsors SUCCEED, a club she founded that provides information and support to first-generation high school students interested in pursuing a post-secondary education.

Lieber has been teaching for 10 years, starting her career at Sepulveda Middle School and working the last four years at Monroe High in the San Fernando Valley. She also worked six years as a specialist, training other educators in bilingual education.

“Her example to our students is living proof of a strong commitment to student achievement,” said Monroe High School Principal Chris Rosas. “As an immigrant herself, English learner, and first-generation college student, she makes a daily commitment to serve by leading by example.”


Read the whole story at LAUSD website.