YISD - Ysleta ISD Building - Photo Courtesy of YISD
Ysleta ISD Building - Photo Courtesy of YISD

Ysleta ISD Teachers Nominated for LifeChangers of the Year Award

Ysleta ISD teachers Alejandro De La Pena and Sarah Perez have been nominated for the 2021- 2022 National LifeChanger of the Year award, which recognizes and rewards the best K-12 educators and school district employees across the United States who are making a difference in the lives of  students. 

Sponsored by the National Life Group Foundation, LifeChanger award nominees are selected for  making a positive impact in the lives of students; enhancing their school/district atmosphere, culture, and  pride; demonstrating exemplary leadership at the school and/or district level; possessing a proven record  of professional excellence; showing commitment to building a nurturing environment that supports  learning; and adhering to the highest moral and ethical standards. 

De La Pena, a special education teacher at Parkland Pre-Engineering Middle School, was  nominated for helping the school raise hundreds of thousands of dollars in grant money in recent years.  Since he began working at the school nearly four years ago, the campus went from having one project  funded on DonorsChoose.org for $174 to about 200 funded projects totaling about $150,000. 

As a result of his efforts, Parkland Pre-Engineering Middle School is now the No. 1 All-Time School  in El Paso on DonorsChoose.org, and De La Pena is the No. 1 All-Time Teacher in El Paso as well. He has also helped showcase student and community spirit through Christmas gift giveaways and  events like NspirED@thePark (where community members share inspiring stories of overcoming  obstacles) and SEL@thePark awards (to celebrate community members who help build and promote a  positive social-emotional learning environment). 

Perez, a kindergarten teacher at Glen Cove Elementary School, was nominated for exceptional  instructional skills that helps create lifelong learners in her students. Her nomination application said  Perez’s “literacy practices she creates on a daily basis will serve these children throughout the rest of their  lives! Clearly, everything we learn started in kindergarten.” 

Sponsored by the National Life Group Foundation, the LifeChanger award annually seeks  nominations of outstanding K-12 educators and district employees who exemplify excellence, positive  influence and leadership. Winners are chosen by a selection committee comprised of former winners and  education professionals, and will be announced later this year. 

Each school year, LifeChanger of the Year receives hundreds of nominations from all 50 states  and the District of Columbia. Eighteen individual LifeChanger of the Year awards will be given during the  2021-2022 school year, with cash prizes ranging from $3,000 to $10,000 that will be shared with  schools/districts.  

Members of the community can view De La Pena’s and Perez’s LifeChanger of the Year nominee  profiles at www.LifeChangeroftheYear.com, and are encouraged to leave comments on their individual  profile, which will be taken into consideration during judging. One of the $5,000 cash prizes, the Spirit  Award, recognizes the nominee whose community shows the most support. 

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