My name is Rita Guzman Ed.D. I am originally from Joliet where I continue to reside. I graduated from the University of St. Francis in 2002 with a bachelor’s degree in Education. I continued my education at National-Louis University and received an endorsement in Bilingual and English as a Second Language. I then returned to USF to pursue a master’s degree in Educational Leadership and a second master’s degree specializing in Differentiated Instruction with a minor in Special Education. I returned to pursue a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership with a concentration in bilingual literacy.
I have served in many educational roles, bilingual teacher, ESL & Special Ed. Specialist, Assessment Coordinator, Assistant Principal, Principal, Director and currently serve as Executive Director of Language Acquisition where I oversee grants, world languages, and educational programs focused on biliteracy prek-12, and dual language programs at East Aurora School District 131. My roles have allowed me to be exposed to a variety of languages,cultures and customs. I have been honored to have presented at the state, and national level. Giving back and serving my community is a passion of mine and I have enjoyed guiding others as an adjunct professor for USF and NIU. At the university level I have developed graduate course work and am the author of Serving Special Populations, Serving ELL with Special Needs, and co-author of ESL courses.
Some of my most impactful accomplishments have been obtaining a doctoral degree in bilingual literacy that allowed me to conduct research on the impact of educational programs. Biliteracy is something I feel strongly about and my current role permitted me to lead the third largest school district to implement dual language for all students. The focus on language development increased SEAL of biliteracy numbers and I am proud to have led this work.
When I am not working I most enjoy simply spending time with my family. My wonderful family includes my husband of 23 years, Alex, and our two beautiful daughters (Brittney 18 and Lindsey 13). I look forward to sharing my knowledge and expertise with other educators.