March is the month we celebrate literacy in America and we do so by honoring the birthday and the timeless writings of Theodore Geisel, otherwise known as Dr. Seuss. Dr. Seuss would have been more than 100 years old last month and his legacy lives on in the phrase “Read Across America.” Therefore, the Board of Education finds it only fitting to honor an educator who dedicates her career to the reading curriculum in our school system, namely Lele Demestihas, Reading Teacher Specialist at Pasadena Elementary School.
Lele has been an asset to AACPS for more than three decades. She consistently demonstrates her commitment to increase student achievement through interdisciplinary quality instruction, strategy-focused meetings, professional development, mentoring, coaching, and literacy activities. She creatively helps other teachers unlock the potential in each child, supporting the county and school literacy initiatives and helping struggling learners make connections in a failure-free environment.
“Ms. D” constantly seeks ways to close the achievement gaps in literacy, evidenced by her well-planned lessons and school-wide professional development. She created a school literary magazine to guide student editors and writers through the publishing process. She organizes “Read Across America” activities and seeks community partners to share a love of literature with students. Lele helps students express themselves creatively through writing small moments, making connections between the written and spoken word.
Lele provides professional development for reading interventions to other teachers. Her enthusiasm and dedication to literacy ensure other schools are provided foundations and tools to implement some of the reading interventions with fidelity. Beyond the school day she hosts parent involvement opportunities to engage parents in Common Core Curriculum Standards, literacy and assessments. Through Ms. D’s professional development, she is making an impact on students’ educational experiences and helping move Pasadena Elementary forward on the continuum of academic progress. Pasadena Elementary is a caring community, fostering high standards supporting the whole child – academically, socially and physically – and Lele’s efforts support this vision. The school was recently recognized as a 2016 National Blue Ribbon School, and her creativity and approach to elevate all students has certainly contributed to this success!
Lele Demestihas – You have an excellent rapport with students and staff; and your strategies and positive learning environment ensures students remain engaged and motivated to learn. Your colleagues consider you a valuable resource and mentor and the entire Pasadena Elementary community cherishes your enthusiasm, passion, expertise and constant support. Congratulations on being selected Educator of the Month for March 2017!