Danielle Lindo is a 10th grade science teacher at Manual Arts Senior High School in South L.A. This is her first year teaching in LAUSD.
Danielle Lindo with AmeriCorps Member Lauren Schlanger
How would you describe the typical AmeriCorps member? A positive, dedicated individual who tries his or her best to promote student success. All of my City Year members have been wonderful influences on students and have built relationships and support networks for students that I, as a teacher, have not been able to forge. I am so happy to have their help in my classrooms!
How does City Year help build a positive school culture and climate? Going to school is a much happier experience when you are greeted by a bunch of yellow-clad individuals laughing, singing, and dancing at 7:30am. There have been many times when their positive energies have cured a morning scowl. In addition, it’s much easier to be positive when there is a smiling City Year member who offers help, support, and resources. I’ve seen first-hand the effect my City Year members have had on students I couldn't reach.
In your own words, why is City Year's work necessary? As a teacher, I am often overwhelmed with trying to balancing the individual needs presented by each of my 220 students. In any given class I am balancing the needs of 40 students, some of whom require special accommodations due to special needs, difficulties with the English language, etc. Having a City Year member offer individual tutoring and support to students has been an invaluable service. I have more than one student who attributes "City Year" as his or her reason for passing my class.
Name a favorite piece of City Year culture. Teacher appreciation week comes at the end of the year when many teachers are feeling ragged and worn out. It lifted my spirits to see their posters and to feel appreciated by my City Year colleagues. Their teacher appreciation posters were especially close to my heart. In addition, my City Year members' positive dispositions are infectious and I am very thankful to have them in my classroom.
What is your favorite uniform part? I adore the yellow vests. I have considered getting one myself so I am never lost in a crowd!