Year Honored: 1997Pioneer High School
At the time of the Award, Javier Gonzalez was:Teacher
Pioneer High School
Subject(s) taught: Mathematics
Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12
Javier Gonzalez is the math department chair at Pioneer High School in Whittier, where he developed the Pioneer Math Academy, a six-week summer math program that serves over 700 students each year. The Academy teaches math principles by means of students' active participation in math-related projects, which, along with his other enrichment classes, are designed to foster youngsters' self-confidence. During the school year, Gonzalez also serves as a mentor teacher and as the coordinator of Pioneer's gifted and talented education program. "I have been the poorest of the poor and the richest of the rich," says Gonzales, who came to the United States at the age of nine speaking only Spanish, and was the first of eleven siblings to attend college. In addition, he is the advisor to the Pioneer Leo Club, a program affiliated with the Lions Club that provides opportunities for young people to perform community service activities.