Principal Armando Chavez was in the nation's capital Monday to be honored by the White House for having the "values and steadfast determination of Cesar Chavez to organize for a more just tomorrow."
A White House media release said the 10 honorees have committed themselves to improving the lives of others in their communities and across the country.
Chavez has worked for Columbus Elementary 15 years and spent eight of those as an instructional leader before becoming principal. He said his main priority is to provide structure for students and that it is the passion of teachers that drives students.
Columbus Elementary serves a population in which 99% of the students enter as monolingual Spanish language students. Many of these students were born in the United States and live across the border in Mexico.
Chavez said he recognizes the challenges parents face by sending their children to another country for school, when oftentimes the parents are not being able to enter the U.S. themselves.
Chavez said his vision is to unite the two nations and two languages in order to produce productive U.S. citizens.
During the Champions of Change event, White House officials recognized the Champions' hard work and prompted a discussion about how to advance, expand and develop resources and partnerships that will continue to improve the lives of all Americans, including Latinos.