Meet Our Teachers

 
 
 
 
 
Teacher , Grade Level
 
Mrs. Trejo
Kathryn Trejo, Pre-Kinder
 
 
 
      Mrs. Kathryn Trejo is a teacher at John F. Kennedy Elementary in Mercedes ISD. Her role contains teaching all subject areas to her students. She prides herself in working with the children of Mercedes to help them become lifelong learners as stated in her school’s vision statement. In 2016, Mrs. Trejo, along with Mrs. Briones, created the JFK Dance Team at her school. The JFK Dance Team is composed of 4th and 5th grade students who perform for the community. Mrs. Trejo holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies and a Master's Degree in Educational Administration from Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi.
Charito Alaniz
Charito Alaniz, Kindergarten
 
 

     Miss C. Alaniz is currently a bilingual kindergarten teacher at John F. Kennedy Elementary. She has been with Mercedes ISD since 2000 and has worked at Taylor Elementary, MECC and JFK. Miss Alaniz strives to inspire her students to always do their best in all that they do. She empowers them by giving them the tools they need to build a strong academic foundation to become lifelong learners, successful and productive citizens. She encourages her students to be kind, helpful, respectful and encouraging of one another.   In 2014, Miss Alaniz was selected as MECC’s Teacher of the Year and was awarded the District Elementary Teacher of the Year. Miss Alaniz is a graduate of Mercedes ISD. She graduated from the University of Texas-Pan American with a Bachelor in Interdisciplinary Studies with a Specialization in Early Childhood Education. Shortly after graduation, she received her bilingual certification. Miss Alaniz is grateful for the opportunity to encourage students to dream big and inspire them to greatness and surpass their dreams.

andres reyna
Andres Reyna, Kindergarten
 
 
     Mr. A. Reyna is an early childhood educator at John F. Kennedy Elementary in Mercedes, TX. He graduated from the University of Texas Pan American now known as the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Mr. Reyna received his Bachelors in Bilingual Elementary Education and later on decided to pursue his Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education to continue inspiring young minds. He has over twenty years of experience in the field of early childhood education. This is his eleventh year teaching Kindergarten at Mercedes ISD. On the other hand, he also taught preschool children for ten years at a Head Start setting. Throughout his teaching years, he has demonstrated dedication and passion for the field of early childhood education by gaining knowledge and recognition. In 2012, Mr. Reyna was chosen as Teacher of the Year by Mercedes Early Childhood Center and that same year he was named as District Elementary Teacher of the Year. As an educator with a strong early childhood background, Mr. Reyna will continue to inspire, empower and prepare his students for academic and life-long success.
Ms. Lugo
Kristin Lugo, Kindergarten
 
 
      Mrs. Kristine Lugo is a Kindergarten teacher at John F. Kennedy Elementary. She prides herself in ensuring each student succeeds as they take on the big task of learning foundational skills in reading, writing, mathematics, science, and social studies. After spending nearly five years teaching in an early childhood center, she decided to pursue her passion in educating children by joining Mercedes I.S.D. She has had the privilege of servicing the children of Mercedes for over eight years. Mrs. Lugo graduated with a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies in Elementary Education focusing on Early Childhood through Sixth Grade from The University of Texas-Brownsville and a Masters of Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in Reading from Grand Canyon University.
magda vela
Magda Vela, 1st Grade
 
 
     Magda Vela is a 1st grade teacher at JFK Elementary. She has served the community of Mercedes for 18 years. She started her journey at MECC as a Kindergarten teacher in 2002. She had the honor of serving as the Elementary Teacher of the Year in 2011. Mrs. Vela is very passionate about her job. She believes that every student has a chance to be a lifelong learner and she fosters that through her teachings. Just as she has inspired many learners throughout her years of teaching; the students have also inspired her to continue teaching. She is a graduate of the University Of Texas Pan-American with a bachelors in Interdisciplinary Studies.
sonia contreras
Sonia Contreras, 1st Grade
 
 
 

Mrs. Contreras is currently a 1st grade  teacher at J.F.K. Elementary for Mercedes ISD.   She graduated from the University of Pan American with a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with a minor in bilingual education.  Immediately after graduating, she began to work at Travis Elementary as a fourth grade teacher.  At the end of her fifth year of teaching fourth grade, she moved to Mercedes Early Childhood Center.  She spent the next thirteen years teaching kindergarten.  Although moving from fourth grade to kindergarten was a tremendous change, she embraced the challenge.  In 2016, when Mercedes transitioned to Pre-K through 5th grade neighborhood schools, she moved to J.F.K.   At J.F.K she has taught 1st and 4th grade.  In total, Mrs. Contreras has given twenty-three  years to the students of Mercedes ISD.

yadira torresYadira Torres, 1st Grade
 

     Mrs. Torres is a First Grade teacher at John F Kennedy Elementary School. She is proud to be a First Grade teacher that teaches Reading, Language Arts, Grammar, Mathematics, Science and Social Studies. After school, Mrs. Torres is involved in ACE Reading and Math tutoring Monday through Wednesday and on Thursdays, she participates in two 3rd Grade UIL competitions: Spelling and Storytelling.

     Mrs. Torres is certified teacher with a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education EC-6th Grade from the University of Texas at Pan American and a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction in Mathematics from the University of Texas at Arlington. She is continuing her education in Leadership Degree and will be graduating from the University of Lamar in 2020. She is a great teacher that believes and upholds our school campus mission statement. She inspires, empowers, and prepares all students for life-long success.

anagelica morales
Angelica Morales, 2nd Grade
 
     Angelica Morales is currently serving the community of Mercedes, Texas as a Second Grade Bilingual Teacher at the John F. Kennedy Elementary campus. In the 13 years she has dedicated towards serving the community of Mercedes; her first 2 were spent teaching 1st. Grade at Zachary Taylor Elementary. In 2009, she made the challenging decision of relocating as part of an at will volunteer. At John F. Kennedy Elementary, Ms. Morales has served as the grade level chair in Second Grade for 11 years. She prides herself in collaborating with her fellow peers, leading by example and providing a welcoming and inclusive environment. In holding true to the JFK values; she is diligent, respectful, open-minded and positive she is making a difference in the lives of children. Having grown up as a Migrant student herself, she holds a strong work ethic, commitment to ones responsibilities and believes education is the path towards success. She believe in inspiring children to aspire towards becoming their personal best and academically empowering them for life-long success. Ms. Morales holds an Associate of Arts in Elementary Education Concentration from South Texas College and a Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies with a Minor in Bilingual Education from the University of Texas Pan American.
diana trevino
Diana Trevino, 2nd Grade
 
 

     Mrs. Diana Treviño is currently serving as a 2nd grade Bilingual Teacher at John F. Kennedy Elementary. Mrs. Trevino has dedicated the past 11 years serving the children of our great community. She strives to provide a safe and positive learning environment for each student that enters her classroom. She believes in inspiring and equipping all students with the skills they need to become lifelong learners. As a bilingual student herself, Mrs. Treviño believes that every student can succeed. Her students are her children!

 

     Because of her strong work ethic and sincere dedication to this noble calling, she was selected as Teacher of the Year in 2013-2014. Mrs. Treviño received her Bachelor’s Degree in History and Science from the University of Texas Pan American and went on to obtain her teaching certification in 2009. Working with the excellent team and students at JFK continues to be the highlight of her daily interactions. Mrs. Treviño lives by the adage that teaching is a calling and not a profession.

ninfa briones
Ninfa Briones, 2nd Grade
 
 
     Ninfa Briones is a Mercedes High School alumni. She attended University of Pan American and graduated in 2012 with her Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and Political Science. She has taught 3rd, and 5th grade in the past, but is currently teaching 4th grade Math and Science. She volunteers in after school programs such as A.C.E. and U.I.L. She has coached events for UIL, such as Oral Reading, Ready Writing, Maps Charts and Graphs, Spelling, and Music Memory. In 2014, she became JFK’s UIL coordinator. During ACE she works with students to improve their skills in Math Camps. She is one of the two head coaches for our JFK Dance Team where you can see her walking in Mercedes parades. Her true passion is teaching and working with the students, and doing whatever she can to ensure their success.
rubio
Lori Rubio, 2nd Grade
 
 
Lori Rubio was born and raised in Weslaco, Texas. In 2006, she graduated from the University of Texas Pan American and obtained a Bachelors in Interdisciplinary Studies with a minor in Early Childhood. In 2007, Lori was given the opportunity to work for and serve the youth of Mercedes I.S.D. She was hired as a 2nd grade self- contained teacher at Travis Elementary. For the past ten years, she has been assigned as a 3rd grade Reading/Language Arts/Social Studies teacher. She has also served as grade level chair and on various committees to improve student success.  Through great leadership and determination, Lori has learned valuable ways to inspire and empower the students she is privileged to teach.
andrea elizondo
Andrea Elizondo, 2nd Grade
 
 
     Mrs. Andrea Elizondo is a bilingually certified Second Grade Teacher at John F. Kennedy Elementary.  Mrs. Elizondo has been a teacher for twelve years and has been teaching at JFK for eight years.  She has taught pk3, pk4, kindergarten, first and second grade.  Mrs. Elizondo has had the opportunity to serve as grade level chairperson during her various assignments. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from The University of Texas Pan-American with a double major in English and Spanish with honors.  
vanessa cavazos
Vanessa Cavazos, 3rd Grade
 
 
     Mrs. Cavazos holds a Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies with a minor in Bilingual Education. She is about to complete 12 years of teaching as an elementary school teacher at the Mercedes Independent School District. She started her student-teaching at Hinojosa Elementary School in the spring of 2009. Later that year, she was hired to teach at JFK (formerly known as North Elementary). When she started her career, she spent the first 2 years as a 3rd grade reading language arts teacher. The next nine years she taught 2nd grade for 4 years and 3rd grade for 5 years. She was selected as Teacher of the Year during the 2016-2017 school year.  Mrs. Cavazos strongly believes in empowering and inspiring all students to reach their full potential. The best way to reach out to her students is by creating a comfortable and safe learning environment and building a strong student-teacher relationship. 

 

laura soto
Laura Soto, 3rd Grade
 
 
 
Laura Soto is a 3rd grade Math and Science teacher at JFK Elementary. Mrs. Soto has worked with the Mercedes Independent School District for 14 years. She prides herself on the academic success of all her students. Mrs. Soto has served on the principal’s advisory and culture committees.  Laura has also served as the grade level chair and mentored various student teachers on their way to becoming the future of education.   Laura received her Bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with a Minor in Bilingual Education from the University of Texas Pan American.
senteno
Anabel Senteno, 3rd Grade
 
 
     Mrs. Senteno has been employed with Mercedes I.S.D. for 13 years. She is a graduate of U.T.P.A. with a Bachelors of Interdisciplinary Studies EC-4. She holds a specialization in bilingual education. She is currently a 3rd grade. Math and Science teacher. She has taught 3rd grade for 3 years. She also has ten years experience in 1st grade. In first grade she was grade level chair for many years. She prepares students for academic success by delivering fun and engaging lessons to her students. She empowers her students by building relationships with her students to build on their confidence to be successful. She inspires students to do their personal best by giving each one an individual goal and motivating to work towards that goal. She prepares her students by ensuring students are successful on a daily basis. She currently works ACE to provide the extra support needed for her students. She focuses on building relationships with parents and students so all students can be successful at JFK!
monica zamora
Monica Zamora, 4th Grade
 
 
     Monica Zamora is a 4th grade Bilingual Education Math teacher at John F. Kennedy Elementary. She has served the district for ten years and has taught math and science. She believes that all students are capable of achieving lifelong success with proper preparation. Being an alumni of Mercedes public schools, Mrs. Zamora hopes to give back to her community by inspiring and empowering her students to excel to their greatest potential and break down as many barriers along the way. She believes that each student is unique and that they learn best when they are in a supportive environment where they have a teacher who is truly passionate and will use research based instruction to meet the student’s academic needs. She currently serves as grade level chair and UIL Number Sense coach for her school. She was honored with the Teacher of the Year award for the 2018-2019 school year. Monica Zamora holds a Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies with a minor in Bilingual Education from the University of Texas Pan American.
tony Anzaldua
Tony Anzaldua, 4th Grade
 
 
     Antonio Anzaldua is a 4th grade Science teacher at John F. Kennedy Elementary. He has served the district for thirteen years, and has taught at the elementary level for a total of 19 years. As an alumni of Mercedes I.S.D.he enjoys giving back to his community by inspiring and empowering his students to be confident, successful and overcome any challenges along their educational, and eventual professional careers. Mr. Anzaldua has been the lead advisor for the JFK Student Council for the past ten years.  He is also known as Coach Anzaldua at Sgt. Chacon Middle School where he has coached successful Tiger teams in football, basketball, and track for over ten years.  Mr. Anzaldua's enthusiasm for education came from both his parents who taught at Mercedes High School.  His father taught Electrical Technology for 45 years and his mother taught for 20 years.  Mr. Anzaldua was honored to receive the Elementary Teacher of the Year award for the 2010-2011, and the Mercedes ISD Teacher of the Year for 2010-2011 school year. Antonio Anzaldua holds a BBA in Finance with a minor in Electrical Engineering from the Texas A&I University.  Mr. Anzaldua completed his Teacher Certification through UTPA and has served as a member of the UTPA Science Collaborative.  
beatirz perez
Beatriz Perez, 4th Grade
 
 
     Beatriz Perez is a Language Arts Bilingual teacher for Mercedes ISD that oversees all the writing for fourth grade. After spending over 10 years in the educational field, she continues to prides herself in making sure all her students reach superior academic achievement. She has a passion for reading and instills that passion on her students because she believes that any reading is good reading. In January of 2019, she was chosen by the TEA as an Instructional Material Quality Evaluation (IMQE) member to help evaluate new curriculum for school districts across Texas. She works with third and fourth graders as a UIL Coach in Creative Writing. Mrs. Perez graduated with an Associates of Arts in Teaching EC-4 Generalist and an Associates of Arts in Child Development/ Early Childhood Education from South Texas College. She graduated as Magna Cum Laude when she received her BA in Interdisciplinary Studies with Bilingual Education Specialization from The University of Texas Pan America. This past summer, she completed her M.Ed. in Bilingual Education with a Specialization in Dual Language from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. We are not only proud but honored to have Mrs. Perez work as a bilingual teacher at John F. Kennedy Elementary School District.
 
 
Patricia Trevino
Patricia Trevino, 5th Grade
 
 
      Patricia Diane Treviño has been an educator for twenty five years. If you had asked her back in the day what she wanted to be when she grew up, she may not have been sure of what it was; but, she would adamantly state, “I will never be a teacher.” Famous last words… Her mother, a teacher for 30 years, constantly impressed upon how getting an education helps develop a mindset and skills to succeed not only in school but in life. Later Patricia would reflect on how it was her mother’s passion for her work that instilled in Patricia the love of learning itself. Currently, Patricia teaches 5th grade Math and Science, and serves as the grade level chair at John F. Kennedy Elementary in Mercedes, Texas. There, she consistently and passionately encourages students with a welcoming learning environment where students will be cared for, listened to, and provided with the best possible opportunity to develop their own love for learning. In 2018 Patricia was named JFK Campus Teacher of the Year; and subsequently, Elementary Teacher of the Year for the Mercedes Independent School District. Patricia is a graduate of Texas A&M University in Kingsville where she graduated with a BBA in Accounting. She received her Texas Teaching Certificate from the Alternative Certification Program at the University of Texas in Brownsville.

WilliamsonRobert Williamson, 5th Grade
 

     

      Mr. Robert M. Williamson Jr. is a 5th grade reading and language arts teacher at JFK Elementary in Mercedes ISD. Mr. Williamson has been an elementary classroom teacher for over eight years and has been a Football & Basketball coach at Harrell Middle School for the better part of six years. Mr. Williamson is a native of Mercedes and is a Mercedes High School graduate. Mr. Williamson earned a BA in interdisciplinary studies from the University of Texas-Pan American.

Mr. Williamson has had the honor to collaborate with administrators and other district personnel as part of the Assistant Superintendent Advisory Panel to analyze student data and assist with instruction. During his current tenure Mr. Williamson has been instrumental toward helping countless students discover a love for learning and helping students develop a passion for accomplishing their goals.

Johanna Ramirez
Johanna Ramirez, 5th Grade
 
 
     Ms. Johanna Ramirez Is a Math teacher at John F. Kennedy Elementary. Her role entails working with students, staff, and parents to positively impact John Kennedy and Mercedes ISD’s mission, vision and values. After working in retail management for over 5 years Ms. Ramirez decided to merge her passions; education, people, kids and advocacy. She went into education and found her true calling; where she can help shape the future through the students she teaches, the parents she has constant communication with, the staff that she is able to teach and learn from, and the fight she puts up for her students. She recently went back to school and received a Master’s in Educational Leadership, as well as received her principal certification from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. 
D Guerra
Dolores Guerra, 5th Grade
 
 
Mrs. Dolores Guerra teaches 5th grade reading and language arts at John F. Kennedy Elementary in Mercedes. Mrs. Guerra developed an early interest in education when she became a college tutor in 2009 for ACE, our after-school enrichment program. She has since been passionate about teaching and about making a difference in her students' lives. Mrs. Guerra was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA and moved to Weslaco, TX as sophomore in high school. She graduated in 2009 from Weslaco high school. In 2011, she completed her associates in EC-6 Generalist and social worker from South Texas College. She graduated a Magna Cum Laude with her bachelor's in science from Texas A&M Kingsville in 2013. Since graduation Mrs. Dolores Guerra has created a successful track record in teaching. Seeing the eagerness in her student's faces to learn clearly marks the dedication she puts forth on everything she does in her classroom.
j garcia
Jose Garcia, Physical Education
 
     Jose Garcia is the Physical Education teacher at John F. Kennedy.  Coach Garcia is a Mercedes High School and University of Texas at Pan American graduate. 
     Coach Garcia has been teaching elementary physical education with Mercedes I.S.D. for over 20 yrs. He takes great pride in providing the basic and fundamentals in Physical Education. He has over the years enjoyed watching how his students have flourished into great athletes in the Mercedes I.S.D. athletic program.
     Under Coach Garcia the students learn basic and intermediate basketball, volleyball, football, soccer, physical fitness skills, among others. 
     Coach Garcia coached Jr. High football, soccer and track for around 10 yrs.  He still keeps himself busy after school coaching a youth soccer team for his son's team a local youth soccer league.
R. Medrano
Rodger Medrano, Music
 
    Since 2013, Mr. Rodger Medrano has been the music teacher for K-5th grade at John F. Kennedy Elementary within Mercedes ISD. Mr. Medrano, originally pursued music education with the intention of working at the high school level, his student-teaching experience, under the supervision of Sister Potts in Los Fresnos, opened his eyes and his heart to the idea of inspiring a love for music at the earliest age possible. Upon completing his B.A. in Music Education at The University of Texas at Brownsville, Mr. Medrano decided to focus his mission within the primary levels. He has created a range of musical opportunities in which his students can engage in including: marching band, flag corps, drum line, caroling group, and rock band. Additionally, these music groups have performed throughout the Rio Grande Valley community at various places/events including annually at Mercedes Holiday Parades, Mercedes’ Festival of Lights, a Viper’s game, Mercedes Premium Outlets, Paradise Adult Day Care Center, and Valle Vista Mall. In 2014-2015, Mr. Medrano was chosen as the teacher of the year at North Elementary.
Gonzalo Lopez, Life Skills
 
 
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Diana Banos
Diana Banos, Resource Teacher
 
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Special Education Teacher
Thirteen years experience
One year experience in general education 
Motto: Everyone has the capacity to learn, we just learn in different ways, patience is key.
Eldemiro Ayala, Resource Teacher
 
 
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michelle Anzaldua
Michelle Anzaldua, Speech Therapy
ms. espinoza
Olga Espinoza, Literacy Specialist
 
 
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Cecilia Ramirez, GT Teacher
 
 
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