NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A Bronx teacher could be named one of the world’s top teachers and win a $1 million prize.
On Monday, P.S. 48 Joseph Drake Elementary School in Hunts Point surprised her students with the good news.
Some were overcome with joy after learning their beloved music teacher, Melissa Salguero, was one of 10 teachers chosen from around the world who could win a $1 million Global Teacher Prize from the Varkey Foundation.
“I’m educating these kids for their future and I want them to leave my classroom with so much pride in their heart and the mindset that nothing is impossible,” Salguero told CBS2’s Aundrea Cline-Thomas.
P.S. 48 did not have a music education program for more than three decades when Salguero arrived in 2010. Since then, she’s revived the program and raised $250,000 for instruments.
In the process, she’s fostered a love of music and learning in her students.
“Ms. Salguero has a great attitude. She tries her best, and if something don’t go her way, she keep on trying and doesn’t give up,” said fifth grader Alex Villanueva.
For the Global Teacher Prize, Salguero was selected from more than 10,000 applicants. She’s the only teacher representing the United States and the only music teacher to ever make it in the Top 10.
“I’m very proud of her, like yo I want to be like her one day. She is my inspiration,” fifth grader Ashley Falcon said.
Salguero says if she wins, she’ll first throw a part for students at the school. Then, she hopes to bring more musical opportunities to the community.
But her mission is to bring more musical education programs to every school across the country.
She’s no stranger to big awards. In 2013, she was the Lincoln Center Arts Teacher of the Year. Last year, the GRAMMY Awards named her the Music Educator of the Year.
Salguero is headed to Dubai in March to see if she’s the big winner of the Global Teacher Prize.