Building on a similar initiative launched a year ago at Huntington High School, a pair of J. Taylor Finley Middle School teachers have developed a mentoring program for English as a new language and dual language students.
Teachers Ingrid Moreira and Mercedes E. Trejos worked with Judy Goris-Moroff, the district’s director of world languages, ENL and bilingual programs on the project at Finley, which has been labeled a success based upon student participation and response.
“The program is a way to build foundations, leadership, a sense of community and family within the middle school,” Mrs. Trejos said. “The program identifies student role models and places them in the role of leadership. Mentoring offers guidance, support and encouragement aimed to develop competence and character of the mentee.”
Dozens of students have responded in a very positive manner to the new program, which features after school meetings and activities.
“Mentoring brings upon many benefits to our students from which they can enhance their skills,” Mrs. Moreira said. “Such benefits include, but are not limited to, helping develop school culture and appreciation, increasing peer support and encouragement, fostering a sense of belonging and improving reasoning and better decision-making skills.”
Mrs. Moreira obtained a BA degree at Queens College in Spanish education. Following her graduation, she volunteered with the Peace Corps, teaching Spanish and English with a group of teachers from England for almost one year in the South American countries of Bolivia, Ecuador and Colombia. “I taught lessons in those places that last a lifetime,” she said.
After returning to the United States, Mrs. Moreira pursued graduate studies at Molloy College, earning a Master of Science degree in Spanish education, 7-12. She came to the Huntington School District in 2008.
Mrs. Moreira taught at Huntington High School for four years before moving to J. Taylor Finley Middle School. She taught Spanish at Roslyn High School for six years before coming to Huntington.
Mrs. Trejos obtained undergraduate and graduate degrees at Stony Brook University. A Huntington High School graduate, she completed her student teaching requirements in the Northport-East Northport UFSD and worked part-time in the Elwood UFSD last year. She has been a member of Huntington’s faculty since last September