Working for equal education for all students
With Hispanic students representing nearly half of the Clark County school district, Darlin (Darlene) Delgado is working to bridge this gap between the community and educational system. As a veteran educator and newly appointed principal of Clark County School District’s Virtual High School and Academy for Individualized Study, she is implementing programs to benefit all students of Southern Nevada.
Delgado helped develop a campus master schedule to maximize student learning for college and career readiness, direct and coordinate the process for the National Academy Foundation accreditation of the Business Information Technology Academy and implement district and school goals. Delgado also served as dean of students at the Las Vegas Academy of International Studies, Performing & Visual Arts. While there, she monitored student behavior in compliance with CCSD policies and regulations, pupil personnel services and maintained discipline by enforcing school and district rules.
Delgado moved to Las Vegas when she was 11 years old with her family from El Salvador and she spoke no English at the time. “My father relocated our family of seven to Las Vegas to escape from the atrocities of a civil war. He was determined to provide his family a life of freedom and opportunity; he worked as a kitchen worker and porter in various casinos,” she explained.
“My parents instilled in me that education was the great equalizer. I often heard from my father that education was my ticket out of poverty and that if I wanted a good life, I had to have a good education.”
Educated through the Clark County School District, she credits her experience for helping her achieve many of her goals. “While in high school, I had wonderful and inspiring teachers who believed in my potential. My school counselor, Mr. Montoya guided and helped me get into college and get a scholarship. For me, my career choice has been a personal mission. I give credit to my teachers, counselors, mentors and family for my education.”
She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Secondary Education from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and a Master of Arts degree in Educational Administration from the University of Phoenix.
“I wanted to pay back to all of the teachers and everyone who helped me along the way so I also became a teacher,” she said. Delgado chose to advance her education because, “as a teacher, you impact the students you are teaching but once you become an administrator, your effects are quadrupled and you reach a bigger group of students.”
While a teacher, Delgado, “realized that mentoring became part of my daily interactions with my students. I especially remember one young lady who was my student. During her senior year, Esmeralda told me that she was applying for Metro’s cadet program. At first, I was a little apprehensive because I could not envision Esmeralda as a police officer; she was five feet two inches and a girly girl. I completed her reference and later she was accepted into the cadet program. As soon as she turned 21, Esmeralda became a Metro officer and is now a detective. Currently, I have been mentoring three young, new Hispanic teachers who graduated from Clark County School District high schools. One of them is one of my former students and the other two I have met through colleagues.”
In her personal life, Delgado has been married to, “her supportive, best friend and husband for twenty years. We have three children who keep us busy.” Delgado is grateful to the many people she has met and, “I know that each one of them has left a long lasting impression in my professional and personal life.” Delgado is working to create the same opportunities as a Fearless Female.