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EL Teacher and Community Advocate at Washington Community Schools Receives Doctorate Degree from Indiana University

Mary Sacarello doctorate
Tori Peterson

Washington Community Schools is pleased to announce that Dr. Mary Sacarello has been awarded the degree of Doctor of Education Language, Literacy, and Culture from Indiana University, Bloomington. 

Washington Community Schools is pleased to announce that Dr. Mary Sacarello, English Language Learner teacher and Dual Language Outreach Coordinator, has been awarded the degree of Doctor of Education Language, Literacy, and Culture from Indiana University, Bloomington. 

Dr. Sacarello's research regarding Culturally Responsive Teaching demonstrates the value of feeling connected in the classroom. When English Learners were exposed to rich academics on topics they were interested in, it helped improve their academic performance. Lessons would emphasize students' strengths, highlight their culture, and provide positive reinforcement that established meaningful connections.

“Dr. Sacarello is beyond amazing. She works tirelessly for her students and their families. She makes connections with families and is the go-to person for many of our EL families when they have questions about school. Dr. Sacarello promotes lifelong learning with her students. She has led by example in pursuing and achieving her doctorate. Our community is better because of Dr. Sacarello and her family,” stated Washington Upper Elementary Principal Jay Wildman.  

“Education has always been important for me, and as you know, so are my multilingual learners. Therefore, I decided to pursue a degree to further my education around my passion and also to give my multilingual learners a voice and the inspiration to continue and exceed in everything they set their minds to do. As Nelson Mandela once said, ‘Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.’ I have to add that one of my former students approached me once she knew I completed my doctorate and said, ‘If you can do it, so can I.’ For me, there’s not a better feeling than to inspire others to change this world,” Dr. Sacarello shared.

“Dr. Sacarello is a leader in our efforts to develop a system to support our English Learner students. Working towards and earning her doctorate is a remarkable accomplishment that reflects her dedication, hard work, and passion for education,” stated Superintendent Kevin Frank. “Even more importantly, our English Learner students and families will continue to benefit from Dr. Sacarello's expertise and knowledge. We are very proud of Dr. Sacarello.” 

Washington Community Schools extends its heartfelt congratulations to Dr. Sacarello on this remarkable achievement. The district is confident that her pursuit of academic excellence will continue to enhance the quality of education provided to our students.