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Margarita Bacigalupo, a student in the Educational Leadership and Management Ed.D. program at Alliant's California School of Education, was chosen as the Teacher of the Year in the 2012 San Diego Latino Community Champions Awards.

Bacigalupo was nominated for the award by parents, students and staff of Horton Elementary in the Chollas View neighborhood for changing the lives of her students and community in a positive way.

2012 San Diego Latino Community Champions Awards winners will be recognized at a dinner and ceremony on March 29, 2012 at the San Diego Hall of Champions in Balboa Park with proceeds going to the San Diego Council on Literacy, Hispanic Continuing Education and Hispanic Family Book Funds.
"I am very honored and thankful to the wonderful people who nominated me. I am so happy that they trust me and appreciate my work in the community of my school," said Bacigalupo.

Although Bacigalupo now works at Knox Middle School, she still works with parents from Horton Elementary to help plan activities for the Latino community that improve the lives, safety and education of children and parents. Because of her work, many of the parents from Horton have become leaders in the local community and continue to organize educational events for their children. For example, they are providing free Spanish reading classes after school for children in the community. Even though many of the parents lack a formal education, they are keenly aware of the importance of maintaining their children's primary language skills so they can do better in school.

The 2012 San Diego Latino Community Champions Awards are sponsored by the San Diego Union Tribune and Aztec TV, among others.
For more information about the California School of Education at Alliant International University, visit the school's page here.

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