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Mr. Giles-EHS Principal

What inspired you to become Esperanza’s principal?

  • “Esperanza’s a great school. It has a great reputation, and in my own personal career I was ready to become a principal and I was looking for a good opportunity and when I saw this job come up I thought this isn't just a good opportunity, this is a great opportunity. I jumped at the chance to be a principal and I was lucky enough to be selected and I'm honored to be here.”

Do you have any new ideas you are bringing forth this school year?

  • “I always have ideas but right now I'm in a learning phase. There's a lot going on. It's a big campus. There's lots of programs I really want to learn about the school right now to the best of my ability and then once I feel like I have a really good idea of things maybe looking at areas where we can make changes.”

What was your previous job? What was your first job?

  • “My previous job, I was an assistant principal at Warren High school which is in Downey. I worked there for 12 years and then 5 years prior to that as a teacher in Downey. My first job, I actually was a phone receptionist. 15 ½ as soon as I could get my workers permit I got a job answering phones and directing people to the right place. It was a summer job I had.”

Would you rather live in the countryside or the big city?

  • “That's a tough question. My background, My degree in college is ecology and systematic biology which is really just environmental biology. When I went to school  I thought to myself I'm gonna live in the woods by myself, it's gonna be great, I just love nature but then I fell in love with a girl who was a fashion design major and she wanted to live in either LA or NY. We settled where we live now but I do love nature and I think maybe one day maybe when I retire I'll move somewhere a little less busy and enjoy that.”

What is your favorite thing about working at Esperanza?

  • “It is the students. I have found all of the students to be so welcoming and friendly and kind. I got into education because I like kids. I like hanging out with them. High School students are funny. They are in that interesting time where they are growing up and becoming adults  so they can think really well. I love being around kids and the fun and excitement and joy that they bring and the students here have just been amazing.”
Mrs. Swarm-EHS Assistant Principal
Ms. Runge-Dance

Are you new to the district?

No, she’s been in the district for over 10 years 

What made you decide to come to the district?

She was the activities director at YLHS for 10 years and missed doing dance, she reached out to the old teacher who was ready to look for someone else to take the job so she took it

What is your favorite part about working at Esperanza so far?

The dance team, the students, the staff is phenomenal 

How long have you been a dance teacher?

For 30 years, since she was 17

What are you looking forward to most this year?

Being back at something she loves, watching everyone improve, building the dance program

Ms. Newberry-Pre-Algebra and US History

What subject do you teach and how long have you been teaching?

This is my 1st year teaching History but it’s my 5th year teaching math."

What connection do you have with these subjects?

"My connection to math is probably a lot more stronger and personal. As a student, I struggled with math, it was a very difficult thing for me. So to grow up and become a math teacher, I think is interesting because it’s exciting to be show kids that don’t think they are good or can do with math, that they can. And I like to be able to make connections and reach them in a way that shows them that they can be successful with a subject that’s difficult. "

"History is more of personal interest. I’ve been to many places like Washington D.C., our capital, and toured it a few times. Anytime I’m on vacation or abroad, I make sure to visit all of the historical sites like in Europe."

What or Who is your biggest inspiration?

"My biggest inspiration is absolutely my students. My favorite thing is when they realize that they can do something that they didn’t think they can do before."

What made you interested in becoming a high school teacher?

"Well, I have been at the elementary and middle school level so the high school level would be an upgrade. I was super excited to be here because of the kids. I think it’s really cool to be a part of their last school experience before becoming an adult."

What do you like most about working and teaching high school kids?

"I think teens are awesome, funny, fun and so unpredictable. I just love talking with my students and having the adult conversations that we can have. To hear their opinions and learning why you think the way you do is super cool and such an experience. Lastly, my students are a lot more “Tech-y” and can help me with any technical difficulties."

Mr. Lindell-Physics

Where did you teach prior to coming to EHS?   

"Brea-Olinda HS."

Why did you decide to become a teacher?        

"I have always liked helping others, so when I had a chance to switch careers, I chose to go into teaching. I chose science as I have a background in engineering and sciences and worked in companies as an engineer and as a marketer and business leader alongside many types of scientists to make our products for consumers so I can provide real-life examples of using the science concepts I teach."

What’s your favorite part about teaching? 

"The joy of discovery! It comes as both students and I learn new things. The best part is seeing students master new skills....seeing them exhibit greater confidence in tackling new ideas and applying concepts from something known to things that are unknown by making connections from their experience and life." 

What is one thing you’re looking forward to this year? 

"Actually working with students in person on labs. The online labs and virtual sims are okay, but they lack the fun aspects of doing labs like making errors and screwing things up. We learn from our mistakes so it was hard to be excited to be doing so many of the online labs that don't necessarily allow for students to make mistakes."

What are your favorite hobbies/pastimes? 

"I like playing online games, working on the house, exploring national parks, and trying to figure out what my kids are doing. Realistically, I like to do whatever makes my wife Karen happy."

Ms. Riech-SPED

Where did you teach prior to coming to EHS? 

"This is my first year as an actual teacher but I’ve worked here for 14 years as an Instructional Aide in a Special Ed classroom." 

Why did you decide to become a teacher? 

"I love the job. I love working with kids. And I just love Esperanza. Having worked at Esperanza for so long made it really easy for me to want to be a teacher here." 

What is your favorite part about teaching? 

"My favorite part about teaching is making students feel comfortable with what they’re learning and encouraging students just to try their hardest. "

What is one thing you’re looking forward to this year? 

"I’m really looking forward to all of the dances and the sports events. I usually don’t attend but I’d like to start going so I’m really excited to see that stuff." 

What are your favorite hobbies and pastimes? 

"I like to hike mountains. I like to play music and I love hanging out with my nieces and nephews."

Mr. Fitzgerald-Health

What was your first job?

At 17 years old, Mr. Fitzgerald worked for Grip It Lighting in Eaglewood, CA which is a lighting repair company.

What made you decide to become a teacher?

Mr. Fitzgerald decided to become a teacher because of his passion for coaching, mentoring, and athletics.

What are you most looking forward to this year?

Mr. Fitzgerald is most looking forward to having a positive impact on students and being in charge of a successful class they will remember.

Who is your greatest inspiration?

Mr. Fitzgerald has two inspirations that have had a great influence on him. Number one is his mother. She was a single parent with a great work ethic that always provided for him and his sister. The second is Coach Gala. Gala was his football, basketball, and English teacher. He idolized him as a father figure and mentor. Coach Gala and Mr. Fitzgerald are still in touch today. Gala is Mr. Fitzgerald´s “true hero” he claims.

What are some of your favorite hobbies? 

Mr. Fitzgerald's favorite hobbies are working out and playing sports. These activities include boxing and pick-up basketball. He also loves hanging with family and friends, going to BBQs, the beach, and the pool.

Ms. Shirran-