German Fernandez-Hernandez will be teaching math at Eagle Valley Middle School this year. (Photo: Carson City School District)
German Fernandez-Hernandez is described by Eagle Valley Middle School teacher Maria Reynolds as a “golden” student most educators have the fortune of teaching in their classroom once in a great while.
He transferred to Eagle Valley in January 2013, and learning English in addition to staying on par at eighth grade was one of his biggest challenges at the time. But Reynolds said attending school in his new country never took away from his friendly demeanor.
“He was always present and on time to class, he displayed respectful behavior and top notch work routine and discipline,” Reynolds wrote in a letter about Fernandez-Hernandez. “He was always ready and eager to learn. His readiness included impeccable working routines and reliable attitude towards pending work and responsibilities.”
The former Eagle Valley student is now becoming a new math teacher himself with the district, thanks to the guidance he’s received through some mentors as he interned at Carson High School and student taught in the past year. Fernandez-Hernandez was among the new staff recognized at the Aug. 4 Carson City School District new hire event at the Governor’s Mansion Governor’s Mansion Larry Ruvo Stateroom.
“It was quite a change,” he told the Appeal of his experience coming to the U.S. originally in 2013. “I had a lot of people helping me. I realized some teachers and a lot of my peers saw potential in me for whatever reason and now I think I’m understanding why, and ever since then, I’ve been giving it my best. Right now, I am where I am, and it’s a pretty exciting place to be.”
He said returning to Eagle Valley was a life-changing situation being the first place he arrived and now he has the opportunity to go back to teach. In spite of the current construction taking place on campus, he said Eagle Valley is a nice campus and enjoyed the advantage of not having to take a tour during his interview because he already was so familiar with it.
“This coming year, I’m hoping it will remain stable with the changes because of the pandemic,” he said. “I want to start settling in, try new things and above, having fun.”
Merri Pray, professional learning and family engagement coordinator, shared the story with the new staff as an example of the power of producing homegrown teachers from the district and seeing potential through students who develop a passion for education at a young age.
Reynolds’ letter also conveyed Fernandez-Hernandez’s “readiness” and “impeccable working routines and reliable attitude” toward responsibility and his presentation toward others.
Principal Lee Conley on Wednesday also celebrated his pride among the crowd for seeing one of his school’s own return as a teacher.
“He was never in my office,” he said to laughter.