Thank You to Our Paraeducators!

Thank You to Our Paraeducators!

Published on April 5, 2023

Paraprofessional Appreciation Day is observed annually on the first Wednesday of April and honors educators such as teacher’s aides and instructional assistants.

In SFUSD, paraprofessionals are known as paraeducators. Paraeducators are crucial to ensuring that schools function properly. They provide general and special education instructional assistance, ensure school sites are safe as security aides and room monitors, and help to engage our parents and school community as community relations specialists. SFUSD offers the Paraeducator Institute and Paraeducator Leadership Network (PLN) to paraeducators for paid professional development and leadership opportunities.

Meet some of our dedicated paraeducators!

Martha Perez, paraeducator at SF Community School

Martha Perez is a life-long committed paraeducator at SF Community School who makes it a priority to support our youngest English language learners and families. She's always the point person to support classroom teachers to partner with families and brings a wealth of knowledge about supporting student developmental and academic needs. Martha maintains her relationships with students and families as they progress Kinder to 8th grade, providing small group and one-on-one support. She is also the school's nutrition worker, making sure every child is fed and no food goes to waste. Martha goes above and beyond to support anything needed - from family meeting translation, to providing childcare or cooking extraordinary meals for evening community meetings, to yard duty. Martha is truly the heart and soul of the SFC community.

Yvette Nelson Hernandez, paraeducator at James Denman Middle School

Yvette Nelson Hernandez has been an SFUSD paraeducator for the past 14 years at James Denman Middle School in a mod/severe SDC classroom, collaborating regularly with teachers and providing customized support to students. Yvette is also a third-year leader in the Paraeducator Leadership Network, leading PD for paraeducators on Google Docs, Google Slides, EMPowerSF, and data collecting, and demonstrating a deep commitment to supporting the learning needs of other paraeducators. Yvette's passion, patience and thirst for learning is unparalleled; she is a model in her commitment to student learning, bringing warmth and perseverance to everything she does, and exemplifying a growth mindset and a positive spirit.

Maylina Baltodano, paraeducator at Aptos Middle School

Maylina Baltodano is a dedicated Security Aide at Aptos Middle School. Maylina knows that as one of the first adults the students see when they start their school day, it is essential to smile and say “Good Morning” to each student. Teachers know that when a student needs support, "Ms. May" is the one to call. Students feel comfortable expressing themselves with Ms May, and she approaches each conversation with a restorative practice lens. As the mother of an SFUSD student, Maylina interacts with families with a personal lens - showing up with warmth and understanding, sharing her knowledge, and connecting them with the person they need. Maylina is also in her second year as a leader in the Paraeducator Leadership Network where she is developing professional development for her fellow paraeducators in the district.

Thank you to ALL our paraeducators who support our students at SFUSD!

This page was last updated on May 4, 2023