Introducing Gabriela Zimmerman, Superstar Teacher at the Academy
Gabriela was raised in a single parent household. She is one of three children. After her father left when Gabriela was 12, her mother had to support the family on her own. With a middle school education, her mother had to work constantly and had little time for the family. Oftentimes, the children were left on their own. Gabriela’s older sister tried to take the role of parent, but eventually she left to attend college. Despite these obstacles, Gabriela and her siblings achieved great success. Her older sister entered the field of education, and is currently a teacher in the Greater Los Angeles area. Her younger brother entered the military.
Gabriela had her challenges growing up. Yet, she took these challenges as opportunities to grow. Gabriela’s older sister was a great role model and inspiration. When her sister left for college, Gabriela became motivated to do the same. She wanted to be just like her big sister.
Gabriela decided that she wanted to help students that “needed a little extra support and attention”. She also wanted to share her love for history with others. She no sooner found herself at the Academy Community Day School in the Perris Union High School District.
Gabriela hopes that students realize that it is never too late to change. She encourages students to achieve their goals in life. She stated that they do not have “to attend college or become doctors, but just get their life in order and become productive citizens of society.” Further, Gabriela stated that “I want students to find happiness in whatever they choose to become”.
When asked what she loves most about her job Gabriela explained, she loves the flexibility of getting to know the students. In addition, she explained that she loves being able to work closely with her principal to improve the school.
Currently, Gabriela is the Title I Lead, the English Learner (EL) Lead, and the Parent Engagement Leadership Initiative (PELI) Lead at the Academy. She assists in improving parent engagement at the site and district level. She recently participated in the district’s first Latino Family Literacy College Readiness session on November 3, 2015. She is always willing to help students by offering her time to reteach, tutor or counsel them. Her efforts have not gone unnoticed. Gabriela was honored as the Certificated Employee of the month during September 2015.
Gabriela is genuine, passionate, courageous, valiant and graceful. She exemplifies great teaching. She is a role model to our students, staff, parents and district. Through her actions, she conveys the message that if she made it, they too can make it. We are proud to have Gabriela Zimmerman as part of the Academy family. Our site, and district are fortunate to have her positively impacting the lives of our students and their families.