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Leornas Named Teacher of the Year
Posted On:
Tuesday, June 22, 2021

At the June 15th board meeting, Superintendent Garcia announced this year’s Teacher of the Year. Congratulations to Trestina ‘Trina’ Leornas-Hurtado who has been selected as this year’s recipient, a second time winner who was honored in 2005 also.

Currently a mathematics teacher, Trina has worn many different hats throughout her 21 years of teaching. She has been a substitute teacher, CELDT tester, language assessor, and tutor. Her teaching roles have included programs of ELD, Summer Jump, ABC Independent Study, Home / Hospital, Summer Bridge, OTCR, AVID, Panther Pack, newcomer classes and co-taught Special Education students.   Wow!

Her teaching career started at SMHS, but she also spent time at Frontier Alternative in Camarillo and El Puente Community School in Lompoc. She returned to Santa Maria eight years ago to teach at PVHS.

In addition to teaching, she has served on numerous committees, advised campus clubs and coached JV softball. Before the pandemic, she started the Resource Family Student Support Team RFSST Club that supports foster families in our community. While the club had to take a break this past school year, it will remain active.

A major role she held during the pandemic is that as the voice of the PVHS Technology Hotline. She enjoys being able to support students and families with technology support, so critical during this past year.

She provides support to many other campus groups – making posters for ASB, chaperoning camping trips, volunteering at The Patch, attending all types of school events.

 

When asked what she loves most about teaching, “I love giving back to the community where I was raised.  I like being part of students feeling supported and safe while doing the best they can.   I love seeing students grow and I love building the relationships.  Teaching is enjoyable when you are supported by awesome colleagues.”

“I have many beautiful memories.  One that stands out, because it just happened.  Last week a senior who I had his sophomore and junior years came by to visit me.  He struggled in my class and had some personal struggles too.  I was able to communicate with him, his family, counselor, and other fellow teachers.  We all did the best we could to support him.  He came and told me thanks for all the support because things were so hard for him.  He thanked me for not giving up and being there for him like a mom.  He said he almost gave up but pushed through it and caught on credits and will be graduating this June.  Of course, he made me cry because he touched my heart so much.  He said he was sad because he couldn't give me a hug.   Stories like this, make it all worth it.”

Her thoughts on receiving the award, “With the incredibly challenging year we have had it means a lot.  It is humbling as we all deserve an award. We have such great teachers here who do so much and for me to be recognized is a tremendous honor. This year I struggled relearn how to teach through technology and to do my best to reach and encourage the students through online learning.  I spent numerous late nights calling parents and students to reach out for support and to find solutions to help. Thank you I am honored!”

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