Carolina Cromeyer

Carolina Cromeyer is the Specialist, Latino Community Partnerships team at Teach For America. Carolina is the voice behind @TFAFamilia, the Twitter handle for the Latino community at Teach For America. Before joining the Latino Community Partnerships team, Carolina was on the Communications team were she wrote weekly blog posts for Teach For America’s blog Pass The Chalk. Carolina joined Teach For America in March 2012, and is a Boston University 2011 alum. She moved to the United States in 2007 to study Communications at Boston University, and is originally from San Jose, Costa Rica. Carolina puts as much Pura Vida into her work as possible.


All Posts by Carolina

As a proud Costa Rican, I am really grateful to work in an organization that celebrates the Latino community - our differences, our culture, and our español. Every day I feel empowered  by my team, my manager, and my fellow Latino staff - to make an impact on the lives of Latino children in the U.S. The following are three members of our #TFAFamilia who are also proud of why they choose TFA.

This week kicks off Hispanic Heritage Month! We are embarking on a month-long celebration of the Latino community – our líderes, our culture, our language, and our diversity – as well as an exploration of our community’s relationship with education.

The following inspiring Latin@ leaders represent the incredible progress we’ve made as a community, and inspire us to overcome the challenges that remain by fueling the líder we all carry inside.

¡Que comience la celebración!

Juana Bordas –  Author - "The Power of Latino Leadership"

“Latinos are diversity—they are a cultural and ethnic group, not a race. Latinos are Brown, Black, White, Yellow, and all the beautiful hues in between. Some Latinos have ancestors who were here before this country was the United States. Others have recently immigrated. Our extended families are composed of multiple generations. These differences drive an inclusive leadership form rooted in the culture’s expansive diversity. Latino leadership is one of coalition building, bringing people together, working across sectors, and embracing a consciousness of partnership. Latino leaders leverage the power of inclusion.”

Five links that made us think this week:

While Rhode Island was busy becoming the 10th state to allow same-sex marriage, the Senate was too busy to include binational same-sex couples in the new Immigration Bill. Despite the criticism this omission has received, and the efforts of some to create an amendment to include same-sex couples, President Obama reportedly said he would sign the Bill as is. Accepting a Bill that leaves the LGBT community unprotected makes me wonder whether we all really have the same unalienable rights?  

Photo by Drama Queen via WikiCommons

Five links that made us think this week:

Remember those science fairs at school where you had to stand in front of your entire classroom (and their parents) and explain everyone how earthquakes happened? Well if you thought that was intimidating, the White House Science Fair might not be for you. Check out these kids doing some incredibly smart science experiments in front of the President himself. They get an A+ for bravery!

Photo by Unknown via WikiCommons

The editors of Pass The Chalk extend our thoughts and prayers to all of those affected in yesterday’s tragedy in Boston. To the victims and their loved ones, we are standing strong with you. Despite the horror that some people can inflict, there are many others who are willing to risk their lives for strangers and shine as heroes. Thank you to all the heroes on the streets of Boston yesterday; what you did was truly beautiful, and we’re inspired by your spirit of service. Our hearts are with you, Boston, as you recover strongly and bravely from this tragedy.

Photo by Archon Fung via WikiCommons

Five links that made us think this week:

The NRA released a 225-page report on Tuesday defending its proposition that more guns in school leads to more safety. Asa Hutchinson, former Republican congressman of Arkansas, was paid by the NRA to present the report at a news conference with “unusually heavy security.” (Hutchinson even brought along a bomb-sniffing Lab.) The report asserts that if more schools provide weapons to their police officers, security guards, and even staff members, it will increase the security at schools and will lower the response time in the case of a shooting. Because if there’s one thing we need right now is more people with guns, specially more people with guns at school.

Photo by via WikiCommons

Five links that made us think this week:

Just when I thought I was ok at math, I’m reminded it’s all relative. Google researcher Niel Fraser recently visited schools in Vietnam and learned that Vietnamese students in the 5th grade perform at the same level as U.S. students in 11th grade. Vietnamese students in the 11th grade are able to solve math equations that Google would use as their top three hardest questions for an interview. After observing the advancements and discipline among Vietnamese students, Fraser believes that “the state of American computer science education is striking in comparison.” I wonder what innovations in science, math, and engineering are we missing out on if we’re not giving everyone access to a top-rate education like in Vietnam?

Photo by Alessio Damato via WikiCommons

Today’s special edition of the Friday Five is focused on spreading awareness of the collateral damage to education caused by the war in Syria. Today’s story is the children of Syria. 

While some students in the U.S. go to air-conditioned schools, eat organic lunches, and work on electronic books, there are students in Syria who haven’t been to school for over two years since the Syrian War began. UNICEF released a report on Tuesday to help spread awareness about the damage the war is doing to the education system in Syria. Here were some of the findings:

  • The school attendance rate in the city of Aleppo has dropped to just 6 percent.
  • Many of the schools have been converted into shelters for displaced people, as well as for armed forces and groups involved in the conflict. That makes the schools a target for warplanes.
  • More than 110 teachers and other staff have been killed, and “more than half” of the teachers in some areas prefer not to show up to school for their own safety.
  • More than 75 percent” of schools in the country have closed.

Photo by James Gordon via WikiCommons

Five links that made us think this week:

Hollywood actress Roma Downey and TV show producer Mark Burnett recently wrote an article for The Wall Street Journal “mandating” the teaching of the Bible in public schools. Downey and Burnett compare the teaching of the Bible to the teaching of the U.S. Constitution and the periodic table. They claim the Western world wouldn’t have Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Harvard University, and even singer Bono “if there were no Bible.” Sound a little odd? Despite these claims having no real substantial evidence (really, I’m pretty sure Bono would still be singing with or without the Bible), they do make a good argument: “The foundations of knowledge of the ancient world—which informs the understanding of the modern world—are biblical in origin.” I wonder, is it possible to educate young students about the Bible while protecting freedom of belief?

Photo by Jaud via WikiCommons

Five links that made us think this week.

Times are a-changin, not just at the Vatican, but also at Teach For America! The Board of Directors named CEO and Founder Wendy Kopp as board chair, succeeding Walter Isaacson, who will become chair emeritus after more than seven years of service. Kopp will continue her role as founding CEO of Teach For All. The board appointed Matt Kramer and Elisa Villanueva Beard co-CEOs of Teach For America, effective March 1. Villanueva Beard has already gotten some twitter love this week (just in time for Valentine's Day!) for becoming one of the few Latina CEOs in the country. Others took to the blogosphere to thank Kopp for her legacy. Here’s to the exciting org evolution!

For all you stargazers, it looks like something odd is happening in outer space. This morning, a meteorite weighing around 10 metric tons hit Russia’s Ural Mountains. Onlookers captured video footage of the meteorite streaking across the sky and exploding. Unfortunately, it wasn’t just a spectacle. Almost 1,000 people ended up seeking medical attention, some got injured from broken glasses, and around 3,000 buildings suffered damages. Many are wondering if this meteorite presages the Olympic-swimming-pool-sized asteroid passing near Earth later today, but scientists believe this is just a “cosmic coincidence.”  Hmmm.

Photo by C m handler via WikiCommons

About Us

We believe education is the most pressing issue facing our nation. On Pass the Chalk, we'll share our takes on the issues of the day, join the online conversation about education, and tell stories from classrooms, schools, and communities around the nation.

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The thoughts, ideas, and opinions expressed on Pass the Chalk are the responsibility of individual bloggers. Unless explicitly stated, blog posts do not represent the views of Teach For America as an organization. 

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