A New Mexico teacher was surprised Tuesday with one of the most prestigious awards there is: the Milken Educator Award.
It’s a moment Silvia Miranda wasn’t expecting and will never forget.
“Feels amazing that what you love to do everyday is being acknowledged in this way,” said Miranda.
Miranda, a fourth grade teacher at Mesa Elementary in Clovis, is one of only 40 teachers across the country who have earned the honor this year.
“It’s my passion…I was born to teach. I’ve known since I was little, teaching my stuffed animals that I was going to be a teacher,” she said.
She thought Tuesday’s assembly was just to celebrate the school earning its fourth ‘A,’ but there was more to it.
“Had to keep it totally quiet. I couldn’t tell my board what they were coming for, I couldn’t tell anybody,” said Clovis Municipal Schools Superintendent Jody Balch.
“I never once thought it was me,” said Miranda. “Still hasn’t sunk in…I’m just very much speechless right now.”
Among the reasons Miranda was chosen, was the way she’s improved her student’s writing.
“Teachers like Ms. Silvia Miranda are are achieving two years of academic growth in a single year. That deserves to be recognized, that deserves to be rewarded,” said New Mexico Secretary of Education Christopher Ruszkowski.
When she saw them struggling Miranda developed a rubric, and a system that helps teachers spot patterns and trends so they can help students better.
The Milken Family Foundation says she’s an innovator in the classroom and is making a big difference in student’s lives.
Those she works with agree.
“She’s humble, she’s quiet, but she explodes in the classroom,” said Balch.
“Blessed, just blessed,” said Miranda.
Miranda serves on the State Teacher Advisory Committee and is a New Mexico Excellence in Teaching Award recipient.
As part of her award from the Milken Family Foundation, Miranda gets $25,000 to spend any way she wishes.