The Santa Barbara County Education Office and Rotary Club of Santa Barbara has announced Andrea Fuentes is the club’s recipient of the Teacher Recognition Award for the winter quarter.
Ms. Fuentes is a fifth-grade teacher at Cleveland Elementary School in the Santa Barbara Unified School District.
During the Rotary Club Zoom meeting Feb. 5, she was awarded a plaque and $1,000 to use for her classroom.
“Andrea is most deserving of this award for her passion to make a difference in the lives of her students and our community. She has had an immediate impact on the school community in the two years she has been here,” said Gabriel Sandoval, principal at Cleveland School. “She easily goes above and beyond her duties to support her students and their families.
“She takes part in many lead teams and groups to support her colleagues school-wide,” Mr. Sandoval said in a statement. “She also works for Family Service Agency and provides support for our families in the community in other capacities. Andrea is a great asset to have on our team, and I am proud to nominate her for this honorary award.”
The teacher consulted her students and plans to use the $1,000 to buy books and prizes for reading, plan a field trip when school resumes and, if the budget allows, welcome a class pet.
The Rotary Club has honored outstanding teachers from South Coast schools every year since 1986. It awards a secondary, elementary and special education teacher with a certificate and a $1,000 check to spend on classroom needs.
“The Rotary Club of Santa Barbara has a long tradition of supporting the youth in our community. Rewarding excellent teachers like Ms. Fuentes is one way we do that,” said Stacey Lydon, the club president. “There are so many outstanding teachers here, and the Rotary Club of Santa Barbara’s Teacher Recognition Award program is our way of showing how grateful we are for their work.”
Ms. Fuentes holds a master’s degree in elementary education from Loyola Marymount University and a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and Spanish from the University of Notre Dame.