Mr. Garza Wins Teacher Of The Year


Markalya Lee, Editor

South Broward High School ESE teacher Mr.Abel Garza was named 2020 teacher of the year. He studied education because having June, July and August off sounded great to a 17 -year- old. Mr. Garza has been teaching for almost 27 years and the last 20 of those years have been spent at South Broward high School.

Growing up, Garza had always been around special needs children since his mother was an E.S.E teachers assistant. E.S.E stands for Exceptional Student Education, and teachers who specialize in this field of education. The purpose of E.S.E is to help students with disabilities progress in school.

Garza says he enjoys helping them become as independent and be successful as possible. And says that the best lesson he has taught was kindness.

“Teaching my kids how to share and you can’t always be a taker,” Garza said. “You have to be able to give. Making a person smile or saying “good morning” is a good way of being a giver.”

“I was quite surprised being nominated as teacher of the year. Let alone being honored with the prestige’s award winning it. There were 10 other candidates including myself, all deserving of the honor. I believe in my 20 years being at SBHS this has been the biggest number of candidates that were nominated,” said Garza.  “When you recognized by your peers and colleagues it means a great deal to me. It has been a very humbling experience to represent our SBHS Bulldog Family. I may beat to my own drum, but I am not the type of person to pat myself on my back. I hoped one day my work would speak for itself and you know what? It finally did after 26 years of teaching.”

“But I was wrong about having summers off. In the summers I was always working at camps and summer programs,” said Garza.

“Being award teacher of the year was kind of emotional moment for me because it proved all my years of hard work and determination paid off ,” said Garza.

Edwina Smith thinks Garza is a wonderful teacher, who is dedicated to the ESE community. In particularly, she feels he has helped her son, Giovanni, tremendously. She says her son has developed better social skills along with mastering the life skills.  

“Giovanni likes to call Mr.Garza “Mr.G,”” said smith, “[He] is a blessing to South Broward and his ESE students. His dedication is amazing. He is well deserving of this award.”