When he graduated from CHS in 2000, Roberto deLeon had no idea that he would eventually become a 6th-grade teacher in California. For his service to the academic community, DeLeon received a CHS Distinguished Graduate Award.
“In high school, I went to school and did my work because I was supposed to do it, but I didn’t truly love school,” the teacher explained.
During his time in high school, deLeon participated in everything from acting in the school musicals and playing sports to writing for the school newspaper. A few short years later, deLeon spends nearly every day of his life back in school, educating 6th graders.
“CHS planted seeds that sprouted years later, and I am so grateful for that. I left CHS with an absolutely rock-solid foundation,” said deLeon.
Now residing in California, the CHS alumnus made sure to clarify that being a teacher isn’t always as easy as it might look.
“Being a teacher is tough. I’ve been told by more than one person that all of my students exist as payback for how challenging of a student I was. Maybe that’s true,” he joked.
Despite facing numerous challenges in the classroom, deLeon appreciates the difficulties he faces and tries to learn from them.
“I think that every single day a person should be challenged. Being in the classroom everyday is nothing but challenges. I’m inside this giant moving beast, and my job is to figure out how to get a hold of things,” deLeon added.
DeLeon has fond memories from his times here at CHS. His experiences from high school even shaped his outlook on how he teaches his own students.
“Dr. Blankenburg’s creative writing class taught me that teaching and learning don’t always come from a textbook, nor does it always need pencils and paper. I learned to hold myself to a higher standard. I loved his class, and I truly am forever grateful for the quality of his instruction,” reminisced de Leon.
During his interview, the middle school teacher took a minute to reflect on the importance of using your time wisely.
“For all the time I spent griping about school, I could have been working. Instead of firing up the Super Nintendo, I could have cracked open a book,” he said.
DeLeon also connected the time he spent playing video games to contemporary teens’ preoccupation with social media. Offering some advice for current students, he said, “When people tell you that time flies and enjoy your youth, etc., what they’re really saying is not to waste your high school years on Snapchat.”