The Santa Barbara County Education Office and the Rotary Club of Santa Barbara are pleased to announce Andrea Fuentes as the Rotary 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. On February 5, the Rotary Club Zoom meeting awarded Ms. Fuentes with 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. 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.”
“Ms. Fuentes provides excellence in education, dedication, and compassion for youth and families,” said County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Susan Salcido, whose office coordinates the recognition with the Rotary Club of Santa Barbara. “We appreciate the support of the Rotary Club of Santa Barbara and the recognition they provide to teachers. These awards are a reflection of our community, which values educators and education,” Salcido continued.
Fuentes consulted with her students and plans to use the $1,000 to purchase books and prizes for reading, plan a field trip when school resumes, and, if the budget allows, welcome a class pet.
The Rotary Club of Santa Barbara has honored outstanding teachers from South Coast schools each year since 1986. The club 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, President of the Rotary Club of Santa Barbara. “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.