Paulo has been a 12th grade environmental science teacher for the past 3 years. He works at a charter high school that serves first-generation, college-bound students from underserved communities. About 98% of the students are of color, and 82% come from low-income households. Paulo greatly appreciates being able to work with students who come from a similar background as he (first-generation, of color, low-income, from the same type of neighborhood that he grew up in) so he can serve as not only a teacher, but a mentor and proof that they, too, can achieve their educational and career dreams. This summer, Paulo was promoted to become the school’s college counselor and he’s really loving it so far, even though his school is completely online right now because of Covid-19.
I am a special education teacher; for 6 years I taught students of various ages and disabilities, ranging from elementary school students with different learning disabilities to teenagers and young adults with severe disabilities, such as autism, Down Syndrome, and other intellectual disabilities. I also worked as a behavioral therapist for young children with autism in their homes. I have a soft spot in my heart for those with special needs, especially because my uncle had Down Syndrome. After we had Nico, I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom while still staying active in the special education world. So, for the past four and a half years I’ve worked part-time from home as a special education curriculum editor for an online educational company that provides curriculum and educational resources to schools around the country. I work when Nico is at school, and then I’m a stay-at-home mom when Nico is home!
When our next child joins our family, I can take as much time off as needed since I create my own schedule (which I’m extremely grateful for). I plan on taking several months off, and Paulo will also take as much off as his school allows for paternity leave. He’s also saved up all of his sick and personal days to use when the baby comes home. After that, I will continue working on a very part-time basis when the baby is napping or in the evenings, and I will continue to also be a stay-at-home mom! Paulo’s schedule is great, too, since (when he’s not working from home because of Covid) he typically gets home in the late afternoon from work. This allows him plenty of time to spend with Nico (and our future baby) and for all of us to have dinner together every night.
So, as you can tell, Paulo and I love working with kids and we greatly value education!