Oregon’s Teacher of the Year to be featured in Grand Floral Parade

Oregon's Teacher of the Year is headed from the classroom to the parade route as she will be featured in one of the Rose Festival's parades.
Published: May. 18, 2023 at 6:54 AM PDT
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PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV) - Oregon’s Teacher of the Year is headed from the classroom to the parade route as she will be featured in one of the Rose Festival’s parades.

Rosa Floyd’s students can’t say enough about her.

“I think she’s incredibly humble and is just one of the nicest people I’ve ever met,” one student said.

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Floyd has been a kindergarten teacher at Nellie Muir Elementary School in Woodburn for more than 20 years, dedicating hours upon hours to her students in the classroom and on the dance floor, and she even goes so far as to handmake the costumes her students perform in for events like Woodburn’s Cinco de Mayo celebration.

“I’ve been teaching duel immersion and also dance I formed that group 23 years ago,” Floyd told FOX 12. “I started with seven students and two parents and then now we are 75 students.”

She spent years with some students through her dance program watching them grow up from kindergarteners to college students.

“She’s invested thousands of dollars and hours to our group and to our students,” said Osvaldo Gusman. “So that’s what I love most about her. She’s like our mom, like our school mom.”

Gusman says her impact goes beyond the classroom.

“She helps students like me, Mexican American students, embrace that side that for some of us is very difficult especially with language barriers,” Gusman said. “I’ve said it before I’ve felt such a disconnection with my culture because of that but through dance and through her I’ve been able to connect to that part of me that I’ve been longing for.”

It only made sense that she was awarded Oregon’s Teacher of the Tear. An honor that got her a trip to the White House to meet First Lady Jill Biden.

“I’m not perfect by any meaning, I’m not special, maybe I was in the right place at the right time but in that first moment, I feel embarassed because so many people deserve this award not just me and I’m very grateful for that,” Floyd said.

The pomp and circumstance doesn’t end there. She’s going to be featured in this year’s Rose Festival Grand Floral Parade with her students by her side dancing along the parade route.

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“When they asked me if I wanted to be in the parade I said yes but I want to bring my students with me because I’m here because of them,” she said.

You check out Floyd and her students at the Grand Floral Parade on June 10, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., in Northeast Portland. The parade can also be watched on FOX 12 Oregon. More details can be found here.