They include educators who helped their communities rebound from Sandy, a guidance counselor who has shepherded her middle schoolers for 17 years, and a nun who has loyal fans at several Catholic schools in Brooklyn.
Below are descriptions of two winners.The Daily News provides more details on their Hometown Heroes of Education here.
Brooklyn principal April Leong uses her own life story to motivate students at Liberation Diploma Plus High School.
When she gave birth to her son right out of high school, she nearly fell into the trap of poverty. So Leong has spent her 17-year career helping kids from similar backgrounds graduate, go to college and find jobs. She takes students on college tours, helps them with financial aid and finds them internships. Dozens of students have gone to college because of her efforts.
Hurricane Sandy nearly destroyed the home of New Dorp High School Principal Deidre DeAngelis-D’Alessio — and it utterly wrecked her Staten Island neighborhood. But in the storm’s bleak aftermath, DeAngelis-D’Alessio dedicated herself to her students and community, transforming the school into a relief center that aided thousands. And when school resumed, DeAngelis-D’Alessio made sure that staffers located all of New Dorp’s 2,750 students, and that the kids had counselors and financial aid.