Arely Tarango Recognized

Former Hennessey Resident Arely Tarango at Buchanan Elementary School  Honored in 20 Under 2 List

Oklahoma honors 20 outstanding novice teachers

OKLAHOMA CITY , OK- The Teaching & Leading Initiative of Oklahoma (TLI) has honored twenty of the top novice teachers in the state in the annual 20 Under 2 Novice Teaching Awards, a list of promising new Oklahoma teachers. The 20 Under 2 award celebrates emerging teachers who are setting the pace for excellent teaching and making Oklahoma’s future look bright.

Across the state, principals, veteran teachers, and district leaders submitted their top novice teachers for consideration. Each nomination was reviewed by a committee of education professionals and chosen through a multi-stage selection process. The 20 honorees were selected for outstanding classroom culture, fostering academic success, and their commitment to Oklahoma students and communities.

One of those teachers recognized is former Hennessey resident, Arely Tarango is a Kindergarten teacher at Buchanan Elementary School and is a traditionally certified teacher and a graduate of the University of Oklahoma.

Her own educational experiences shaped her decision to become a teacher. “I became a teacher because my teachers made a huge impact in my life, and I wanted to do the same,” Tarango shared. “As a newcomer in Pre-Kindergarten, everything was new. School became a familiar place that I was comfortable with. I felt loved and cared for by all of my teachers. I have always known that I wanted to do the same for others.”

As a Latinx teacher, Tarango knows the impact being in the classroom has on students and families who see themselves in her. A 2020 OKCPS report shows that 58.6%% of OKCPS students identify as Hispanic/Lantinx with only 16% of staff identifying as Hispanic/Latinx. “Knowing that my students are able to see a teacher who looks like them and speaks the same language as them means so much to me because I know how important it was to me to feel represented growing up,” Tarango said.