For 31 years, Angeles Navarro has taught generations of students in the Weld Re-8 School District, from elementary to high school.
Navarro migrated from Guanajuato, Mexico to Fort Lupton and worked in the agriculture fields around town before learning English and getting her teaching credentials.
Throughout her tenure, she was able to connect with many students who shared a similar cultural and labor background, many of whom attended the event honoring her retirement ceremony May 6.
“I’m very happy because I am seeing faces that I haven’t seen in years,” Navarro said.
Her family, former students, colleagues and members of the community were also happy to see Navarro enjoy the tribute in her honor. Most of the speakers recalled that apart from being an educator, Angeles is a charismatic person who has always stood up for her students and colleagues when it was needed.
Former student Bianca Jaquez recalled, “She wasn’t the scary type like other teachers you don’t trust. You can literally tell her anything, and it was just great."
In a letter read by her daughter, Rosalie Martinez, former principal and teacher in Weld Re-8 schools said “There are many things I have learned in my profession. But what I know about teachers is this. First, they must know their subject matter. Secondly, they must know how to impart that knowledge effectively to their students. And, most importantly, they must support and build their students' self-confidence about their ability to learn about who they are and about where they come from. Mrs. Navarro is fully competent in her subject matter, and from what I’ve observed in the activities and awards assemblies, her students have learned from her teaching.'"
Although this year was her last teaching Spanish at Fort Lupton High School, she wasn’t able to fully enjoy it because she had to take a leave of absence for health reasons. Just recently she went back to the high school to finish the year but not as a teacher. Despite the health issues that came up, Navarro enjoyed the dances, hugs, memories and warm affection that were present throughout the ceremony.
“I am happy and thankful with the community because this is my home,” said Navarro. ”Everything has a beginning and an ending. We have to make the best out of life and enjoy everything that comes our way, and I am thankful from the bottom of my heart.”