WORCESTER, Mass. - Dr. Rachel Monárrez sees something special in Worcester.
“Why wouldn’t I want to be here?" Monárrez asked. “Why not Worcester?”
Monárrez calls it a perfect match. Starting in July, she’ll be the city’s new superintendent of schools and said she plans on keeping education a key part of Worcester’s transformation.
“A new set of eyes and those new eyes may very well say ‘This is fabulous. We need to do more of this’,” Monárrez said. “And here is a space. Here is an opportunity where we are going to clean this up a little bit. Make it shinier.”
Monárrez is currently a deputy superintendent in San Bernardino, California, and is bringing 28 years of experience to the heart of the Commonwealth.
Monárrez has been a teacher and a principal, largely focusing her efforts on English language learners and communities of color.
“That doesn’t mean one group of children over another,” Monárrez said. “It means wherever children are at, we meet them there and we continue to move them and grow them.”
Monárrez said she’s up for the challenge of being a new face and understands it will take some time to earn the community’s trust.
“This is not about (me),” Monárrez said. “This is about the community and helping people where my heart and my mind really is.”
She said she’s excited to work with others and unify the district to continue investing in students and the future.
“I will make decisions. The tough decisions, always in the best interest of children,” Monárrez said. “I’m not perfect by any means. Nobody is.”
From sunny southern California, Monárrez said she’s even looking forward to winters in New England.
“It’s all about the snow,” she joked.
First on the list for Dr. Monárrez is coming up with a clear plan for Worcester schools over the next three to five years and grow and diversifying the school workforce.