Position: Parent Coordinator
School: The Brooklyn Latin School
School District: New York City Department of Education, District 14
City, State: Brooklyn, NY
Music that Describes Diana
Diana Palma-Chang was nominated by an anonymous parent of a student.
"Ms. Palma-Cheng is the one of the first administrators I met at New Family Orientation at The Brooklyn Latin School. We were both new to the school. I was new to the culture of the school and everything about being a parent of a high school student," said the nominator. "The school's culture of being a classical curriculum was new to me. Discipuli? Magistri? Salve? These words sounded foreign to me. Ms. Palma-Cheng made me feel comfortable right away, however."
Ms. Palma-Cheng was warm, patient with all our questions, and enthusiastic about her first year at the school. She explained the culture of the school to nervous parents on a daily basis. Ms. Palma-Cheng comes through for parents by answering calls, emails and drop-ins no matter the time of the day, and usually within a half-hour. She'll drop a quick note if she needs more time to investigate an issue or request.
"My daughter has respect for Ms. Palma-Cheng because she respects the students. She models leadership to the students. She leads by example," said the nominator. "When she recruits student volunteers, she'll explain the tasks to them with grace and calmness. She speaks to them in respectful tones."
"Three years later, Ms. Palma-Cheng still exceeds expectations. Other parents told me of times when Ms. Palma-Cheng came through for them when students forgot their dues, missed the deadline for a trip, or were simply lost," said the nominator. "Many students entrust their 'crisis' to Ms. Palma-Cheng because she hardly says 'no.' She nurtures the students and parents. She walks alongside parents at High School Fairs, Open School Nights, and Parent Association meetings. Her presence at these events means she has to sacrifice her family time on weekends and evenings in order to be present at the functions. She is always present and answers questions with a smile."
The school's atmosphere is inclusive because Ms. Palma-Cheng treats everyone fairly. She doesn't show favors with any particular families, and parents find her approachable. The communication line is always open with Ms. Palma-Cheng. She has a can-do spririt while serving a very diverse community at the school. Ms. Palma-Cheng's professional performance is admired by staff and parents alike. She is real with everyone.
"Ms. Palma-Cheng is the perfect liason between parents and school administrators. She gets us answers as we plan events for the students. She shows up for work with the goal of serving the Brooklyn Latin School with her best foot forward," said her nominator. "Year after year, she leads the new parents to a stable place where we are no longer frightened, but confident about our child's chance of success. We have her on our speed dial because she always comes through for us."