FONTANA, CA – Five Fontana Unified School District administrators were honored for excellence in leadership by the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) Region 12 Board of Directors, which bestowed the educators with 2021 ACSA Administrator Awards.
The administrators will be recognized in the ACSA Region 12 online award ceremony on May 10.
The winners are:
• Kim Bente, Almeria Middle School Principal – Middle Grades Principal of the Year
• Ayesha Brooks, Director of Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) – Student Services Administrator of the Year
• Michael Garcia, Director of Family and Community Engagement (FACE) – Valuing Diversity Administrator of the Year
• Marissa Quintero, Fontana High School Assistant Principal – Secondary Co-administrator of the Year
• Janet Rivera, Dolores Huerta International Academy Assistant Principal – Elementary Co-administrator of the Year
“We are thrilled to have so many of our outstanding administrators celebrated for their work in championing student achievement and supporting District faculty and staff,” Superintendent Randal S. Bassett said. “Congratulations to all of our ACSA award recipients on their well-deserved recognition.”
An educator for over 36 years, Bente has taught all grades K-8 and served as a preschool director. Since joining Fontana Unified in 1995, Bente has spent her entire District career at Almeria Middle School, as a teacher, assistant principal and principal.
“I have always enjoyed helping others and working with children,” Bente said. “My love of learning has been inspired by so many people, my grandmother, my spouse and many of the teachers I had growing up.”
Brooks has been part of the Fontana Unified leadership team for the last six years, serving as Dean of Student Services at Truman Middle School, Coordinator of Climate and Culture and Director of MTSS.
“Our goal at MTSS is to provide targeted supports to struggling students while monitoring the academics, behavior, social emotional needs and absenteeism to increase the overall productivity and success of each student,” Brooks said.
Garcia has been at Fontana Unified for 20 years, serving as Director of FACE for the last five years. Garcia taught at Baldwin Park Unified before moving to the District as a first-grade teacher at Primrose Elementary School. Moving into administration, Garcia was assistant principal at Juniper, Live Oak and Maple elementary schools, then served seven years as principal at Maple Elementary.
“As a teacher and administrator, I learned a lot working with young families who were new parents and had limited resources,” Garcia said. “These families needed support and assurance that the District would provide their children with an education that would prepare them for college and career.”
After 10 years in the classroom, Quintero moved to an administration position at FOHI in 2016, overseeing the school’s career technical education pathways.
“I have truly found my niche, providing students with industry-standard, career-based educational tools that will help support their families and future aspirations,” Quintero said. “It is my goal to give my students a competitive edge in the work force and help guide them to success.”
Rivera began her career in education as a dual language immersion teacher, moving to Fontana Unified as a Teacher on Special Assignment and International Baccalaureate Coordinator at Dolores Huerta. Rivera was promoted to Assistant Principal in 2019.
“At Dolores Huerta International Academy we are helping our children build the foundations of success at an early age with our emphasis on a multilingual, intercultural education to create globally minded scholars,” Rivera said. “I consider it an honor to work with educators who are invested in serving our community and committed to seeing students reach their full potential as global citizens.”
FUSD_ACSA_ADMIN: Five Fontana Unified administrators have been recognized by the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) Region 12 with 2021 ACSA Administrator Awards. FUSD honorees, from left to right, are Almeria Middle School Principal Kim Bente; Director of Multi-Tiered Systems of Support Ayesha Brooks; Director of Family and Community Engagement (FACE) Michael Garcia; Fontana High School Assistant Principal Marissa Quintero; and Dolores Huerta International Academy Assistant Principal Janet Rivera.