EDINBURG – The Edinburg Consolidated Independent School District recently announced that the 2017 Elementary Teacher of the Year is Valerie Flores and the 2017 Secondary Teacher of the Year is Zulema Rodriguez.

Flores is a fourth-grade teacher at Lincoln Elementary School and Rodriguez is a sixth-grade English Language Arts teacher at Longoria Middle School.

“I congratulate these two outstanding teachers who truly recognize the important roles that they play in the betterment of our students,” ECISD Superintendent Dr. René Gutiérrez said.  “Both of these teachers work very hard to make sure their students leave their classrooms better than when they came.”

Flores has been teaching since 1989 and is the first in her family to graduate from college. Flores said that she has always had a desire to become a teacher.

“I am very honored, yet humbled to receive such an award from Edinburg CISD.  This honor represents who I am and my passion for teaching,” Flores said.  “I feel extremely blessed and thankful to be teaching with such a high caliber of professionals.  It is an honor to represent a district that strongly supports its staff, students and parents.

Rodriguez began her teaching career in 2003 as an elementary teacher at Eisenhower Elementary School, where she was named the Campus Teacher of the Year for the 2007-2008 school year.  Rodriguez said that those eight years working as an elementary teacher prepared her for the students she impacts today in middle school.

“As Secondary Teacher of the Year, I hope to bring across the message that our students are each unique individuals,” Rodriguez said.  “We need to be the teacher that accommodates our teaching to their needs so they can be successful. No two students learn the same, just like no two teachers teach the same, and for that reason we should be the teacher our students need to bring their learning across.”

Flores and Rodriguez will now advance to the Teacher of the Year regional competition.