Resources are not the most important factor in student achievement

Spending two hours at the school to see the challenges faced by rural schools in Mexico opened my eyes to reflect on my own teaching experience. What I saw was that education as the great equalizer is often unequal in the resources available to a school, but poor schools often equal equal academic success.

La violencia ha robado el alma del pueblo

NOGALES, Ariz. — I remember what it was like all the days when I was ten, mi mama dijo, “Mijo vete a comprar unas tortillas.” So I walked out the door to the Morley Street garita, crossed the line and went to the tortillería. Regresé con una docena. One day, in 1973, mi tia Meli decided to get a job at department store right at the line on the American side. She went to the Morley Street garita and told the U.S. migra man, “I’m just going over to Bracker’s to ask for job.” He said, “OK, go ahead, they have all the papers you’ll need.”

In 1976 we walked from Nogales to Nogales from the movie theater at 12 o’clock at night.

Deportation looms over some young Americans

NOGALES, Ariz. — U.S. citizens can be deported, so says the law, if their non-citizen parents are deported and they are under 18 years of age. That’s what almost happened to Maria, one of my students, and her 10-year old brother. Keeping her spot at our school was so important to them that when her mom was deported they decided to leave Maria, then a high school junior, and her brother here. Her mom was making pretty good money cleaning the houses of Anglos in Nogales, Arizona, where a domestic cleaning-lady employment underground thrives.

Crazy Mario

Mario was part of our lives since we were small kids and today, 40 years later, I was one of two people at his funeral.

Mandas a Magdalena

It is faith that leads hundreds of Mexicans from the state of Sonora to walk 50 or more miles each October in a little-know yet significant religious pilgrimage from Nogales, Sonora to Magadalena, Sonora.