BLOG ENTRY #1 OF 2019-2020: WELCOME BACK!

Albizu Campos staff are so excited to be welcoming new and returning students back to school this month! We are actively recruiting students and have a great incentive program for peer referrals.  Ask us about referring a friend to Albizu Campos! 

Over the summer we spent four weeks learning and growing together as a staff in preparation for a new school year.  We learned about facilitating peace circles, chronic post-traumatic stress and coping mechanisms, project-based learning design, action-planning for liberatory schools, healing – centered schools and classrooms, and diversity inclusion for all.


After returning from our Staff Retreat, each classroom teacher redesigned their classroom to be more inviting and welcoming to students.  Here is one example from Zoraida, our Spanish Teacher. She reimagined her room with a Bohemian theme!


We used our staff retreat to springboard and redesign a first week of school that built community for our students and a sense of belonging.  The whole week had an array of team building activities both in small groups and large groups. You’ll notice a staff spotlight that I will add to my blogs each month that highlight a few staff members so you can get to know the team at Albizu Campos a little better!  

Hugo Muñoz, Math Teacher

Tell me a little about your role at PACHS. 

I am an Integrated Math 1 and 2 Educator and a Robotics Instructor.

Tell me a little about your family and yourself.  

I am a student at heart that is constantly seeking to improve in all aspects of my life.  My family is very important to me since we have been a very close group since childhood. My family is responsible for helping me become the kind man I am today. 

Before teaching at Albizu Campos, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?

Before Campos, I had many interesting jobs and opportunities.  The one that stands out was when I was an assistant cook at a homeless shelter.  This was 6/7 years ago, but I will remember how much I learned about human perseverance, humility, and gratitude through the interactions that I would have with the residents I was serving. 

If given a chance, who would you like to be for a day?

If I could be in anyone’s shoes for a day, I would be in the shoes of any individual that works in education at the federal government level (Secretary of Education, etc) I’m just curious to know how what type of decisions and choices they make or have an opportunity to make. 

If Hollywood made a movie about your life, who would you like to see cast as you?

If Hollywood made a movie about my life I would love to be played by my favorite actor, Jake Gyllenhaal, but I know that I look nothing like him!

What advice do you have for our young people?

I love giving my young adults advice. One of the most useful pieces of advice I can give my students, especially those that are uncomfortable with math, is that they should not accept failure before even trying. It’s ok to fail in the process, but it’s not ok to fail yourself before taking the first step. 

Elias Carmona, Facilities Manager

Tell me about your work at PACHS. 

Currently in my position as Facilities Manager, I offer support to both students and staff in the form of facilities, technology, breakfast and lunch programs. As well as any other issues that come up.

Tell me a little about yourself.  

I am Violeta’s father! I like to walk and know the wonders of the world with my wife and partner.  I was born in Puerto Rico and I have been living in Chicago for 13 years, which has become my second home. 

If you could learn to do something new, what would it be? 

I would like to learn to fly a plane.

If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you would do? 

It depends on the amount I won because I am fairly strict with my finances, but I think I would travel more.  

When you have 30 minutes of free time, how do you spend your time? 

When I have free time, I play the guitar and sing. 

What is favorite indoor activity and outdoor activity? 

My favorite indoor activity is cooking. My favorite outdoor activities are hiking and photography.

What would you call the autobiography of your life? 

The Eliada!