Los Medanos Elementary School -1998 Winner
Linda Switzer taught at Los Medanos Elementary School in Pittsburg. When one of her first grade students contracted a serious brain tumor, she went to his house every day during his radiation treatments to tutor him. She had the class write him cards and letters each day, and also arranged to videotape classroom events so that he could feel he was still part of the class. She organized parents, classmates and other teachers to provide food, Christmas gifts and other support to the family. When another student, an immigrant from Laos, developed medical problems, Ms. Switzer, realizing that there was a communication gap between the student’s non-English-speaking parents and medical personnel, traveled, on her own time, to Children’s Hospital in Oakland and met repeatedly with doctors and hospital administrators to ensure that the boy received proper medical treatment.