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Community members, staff recognized for contributions in special education at You Light the Way ceremony

You Light the Way recipient holding award At this year’s You Light the Way awards, 11 individuals received recognition from San Juan Unified’s Community Advisory Committee (CAC) for their tireless efforts and impacts throughout the special education program. Because of their determination to provide an inclusive environment for all, they truly light the way for their students and the district’s community.


San Juan Unified’s special education program is home to more than 2,700 students and nearly 600 dedicated staff members. Over the past 30 years, the You Light the Way ceremonies have highlighted more than 400 members of the San Juan Unified community who have made remarkable differences in the department.


Matthew Patterson, director of special education, kicked-off the evening by describing some of the most important aspects of special education learning: Inclusivity, generosity, acceptance and support-- it was clear that recipients of the award fulfilled these characteristics in their work every day.


Those in attendance heard acceptance speeches from all who were recognized, as well as words of appreciation from Catherine McGough, CAC chairperson; Ruth Rowlette CAC co-chairperson; Pam Costa, board of education president and Kent Kern, superintendent of San Juan Unified.


Congratulations to all of the recipients of this year’s You Light the Way awards:

  • Dana Crackel-- teacher, San Juan High School
  • Jeffery Crews-- bus driver, Transportation
  • Michael Frith and Jennifer Perazzo-- instructional assistants, Cameron Ranch Elementary School
  • Lee and Carman Hiatt-- community members
  • Pamela Hocking-- resource teacher, Lichen K-8
  • Meghan Hurley-- adaptive physical education teacher, Laurel Ruff
  • Cindy Kent-- vice principal, Del Campo High School
  • Gerald Ralph-- custodian, Ralph Richardson Center
  • Nancy Roycroft- nurse, Health Services

To truly commemorate the brightness that each of these individuals bring to their site’s, recipient Meghan Hurley delivered this quote from Eunice Kennedy Shriver, founder of the Special Olympics.


“You are the stars and the world is watching you,” said Hurley. “By your presence you send a message… of hope. A message of victory.”


To learn more about San Juan Unified’s special education program, click here.