Popular history teacher Moreno receives National Boards
By Lei Fisiiahi, Jesus Medina & Guadalupe Hernandez
As Steven Moreno, a social studies teacher, attempted to check his application status on Friday, Nov. 8, his mood wavered from happy and excited to completely irritated due to website problems. He had to wait more than another week to learn that he had been officially awarded with the National Board Certification.
According to Principal Alicia Romero and the Oakland High School website, National Board Certification is an award that gives a teacher a teaching credential that complements a teacher’s state credential. To receive this award, teachers have to go through the challenging process of completing 10 assessments, 4 portfolio entries, and recording lectures in class.
“In my opinion, it’s one of the best ways to reflect on your teaching to become better,” said Moreno. “It also pretty much makes us certified to teach in any state. I was relieved I passed it because it was such a rigorous process. I was dreading having to do any of the parts over again this year. It was like a huge weight lifted off of my shoulders once I passed. When I found out I passed, I didn’t update my Facebook status, but I told my family, friends, and the students in my classes.”
Many of Moreno’s students were happy to receive the news that Moreno had been given the certificate.
According to Moreno’s students, from his lectures in class to joking around on office hours, Moreno is one of the best teachers at Oakland High and deserves to be recognized for his efforts.
“Of course he deserves (the National Board Certification) because not only does he (push) us to our fullest potential, he makes the classroom live by saying funny jokes and sarcastic lines,” said Cornneisha Godfrey. “Though, it can be quite annoying at times.”
“He makes class fun, interesting, and he relates to many of the students in class. He deserves it,” added senior Stephanie Groves.
The staff of Oakland High also think that Moreno is an excellent teacher who deserves this award for his commitment to achieving the laborious tasks.
“After his determination into completing the requirements, he earned and deserves it. It’s an honor to have a prestigious teacher like (Moreno) at this school,” said fellow social studies teacher Jesse Shapiro. “He attempts to make learning fun for his students. Now that he’s getting a raise, he can finally stop shopping at BabyGap.”
“I hope, in the future, more teachers at Oakland High, and throughout the district, will apply for it,” said Moreno. “Students deserve good teachers, and this process helps you become a better teacher. What’s most important for me is to continue to improve as a teacher. If I ever get to the point where I’m no longer trying to improve, then I hope I have the guts to find a new career, because otherwise the students suffer.”
Moreno just had one complaint about the process, saying that he felt National Board Certified teachers should receive a financial benefit as well.
“I wish Oakland Unified still had the $50,00 per year pay bonus,” he said.