County's newest teacher is the first of her kind but hopefully not the last

Posted at 5:16 PM, Jan 10, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-10 20:28:38-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- San Diego County’s newest teacher will hopefully only the first of her kind and not the last. Stephanie Balbaneda taught her first math class as a full-time teacher at Southwest High School in Nestor Wednesday.


The 25-year-old is the first to accept a job with the Sweetwater Union High School District after completing the district’s “Compact for Success” as a teenager and San Diego State’s R.I.S.E. program as a college student.  The high school program guarantees a student’s admission to State if they make the grades. RISE, which stands for “Rise, Inspire, and become a Sweetwater Educator” guarantees the college student a job after they earn their degree and teaching credential at San Diego State.


“It still feels unreal,” sad Balbaneda. “I was really bad at math, middle school through high school.”

Southwest High’s newest math teacher hopefully won’t be the last through the pipeline.


“The pipeline for schools and getting teachers looks glim,” said Sweetwater Superintendent Karen Janney. “Guaranteed admission at San Diego State, guaranteed employment back in Sweetwater is the perfect combination of closing that loop.”