Pay It Forward: 3 teaching assistants at Lubbock ISD school nominated for hard work

Published: Dec. 9, 2020 at 7:42 AM CST
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - WesTex Federal Credit Union stopped by Lubbock ISD’s Rush Elementary to surprise three teaching assistants for all their hard work this year.

Karen Thetford is a teacher at Rush Elementary School and nominated her three teaching assistants Hope Guerrero, Stephanie Garza and Margaret Rodriguez for this week’s Pay It Forward.

“They are truly the unsung heroes of a special education classroom, which is what I work in,” Thetford said. “They take on a lot of responsibility. Every single day. They come day in and day out there on time. They do their job, they do more than their job. They participate in everything the kids at school, do.

Thetford said these three have stepped up to help this year.

“During the time of COVID when we were all having to work at home, they were every day right there, right online with us. doing everything we did, encouraging kids to be involved,” she said. “And you know, this week, of course, with me being home, they have majorly stepped up and taken great leadership roles,” said Thetford.

“It’s definitely been different having to learn,” Garza said, “some of the kids are on the computer and some are not having to do different things at different times.”

Vicki Love, President& CEO for WesTex asked why they chose the teaching profession.

“I didn’t plan on it. The job just kind of fell on me. And then I got into it. And I love it. I love the kids. It’s sometimes it can be very trying. But then at the end of the day, you know they love you and you love. I can’t imagine being anywhere else,” said Garza.

For those who would like to nominate someone for Pay It Forward, they can fill out the form at

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