“Maestras con Voz”: Bridging Gaps, Building Communities in North Carolina’s Public Schools

"Maestras con Voz": Bridging Gaps, Building Communities in North Carolina's Public Schools


In the diverse landscape of North Carolina's public schools, fostering meaningful connections between educators and the families they serve is essential for student success. Recognizing the unique needs of Latine/Hispanic  families, our innovative program, "Maestras con Voz," takes center stage in empowering teachers to build strong community ties. Facilitated by two dedicated educators, Soledad Oneto y Maria LucĂ­a Bernal Quintero from within our ranks, this workshop seeks to enlighten and inspire fellow teachers to bridge cultural gaps and create a nurturing learning environment for all.

The Need for Community Building:

North Carolina's public school system is home to a vibrant tapestry of cultures, with a significant Latine/ Hispanic population. However, building meaningful connections with these families can be challenging due to language barriers, cultural differences, and sometimes, unfamiliarity with the education system. "Maestras con Voz" addresses these challenges head-on, emphasizing the importance of community building to enhance the educational experience for every student.

Las Maestras:

Our program is spearheaded by two exceptional educators, Soledad Oneto and Maria Lucia Bernal Quintero, who bring a wealth of experience and cultural understanding to the table. With roots in the Latine/ Hispanic community themselves, Soledad and Maria Lucia have successfully navigated the challenges that many students and their families face. Their firsthand experiences as immigrant mothers themselves,  fuel their passion for creating an inclusive and supportive educational environment.

Workshop Highlights:

  • Cultural Competence Training:
    • Understanding the diversity within the Latino community.
    • Recognizing cultural nuances to build trust and rapport.
  • Effective Communication Strategies:
    • Overcoming language barriers through inclusive communication.
    • Utilizing technology and bilingual resources for effective dialogue.
  • Creating Inclusive Classrooms:
    • Integrating diverse perspectives into the curriculum.
    • Fostering a sense of belonging for all students.
    • Culturally appropriate strategies to support newcomers and planning culturally appropriate activities to support students
  • Family Engagement Techniques:
    • Involving parents in their child's education journey.
    • Collaborative projects and events that celebrate cultural diversity.
  • Navigating Educational Systems:
    • Providing resources to help families understand the U.S. education system.
    • Bridging the gap between home and school to support student success.

Outcomes and Impact:

"Maestras con Voz" aims to create a ripple effect in North Carolina's public schools, fostering a sense of unity and understanding among teachers, students, and their families. By equipping educators with the tools to navigate cultural differences and embrace diversity, the program strives to create a more inclusive and supportive educational environment.


"Maestras con Voz" stands as a beacon of progress in North Carolina's public school system, illustrating the power of education in transcending cultural barriers. By empowering teachers to connect with Latino families, we are not only enhancing the educational experience for students but also building a stronger, more united community that values diversity and inclusion. As the program continues to make waves, it becomes a testament to the positive change that can occur when educators come together to make a difference in the lives of their students and their families.

Written by: Indira Bautista