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    ESL Page

             Welcome to the ESL page at Fort Defiance High School.  I’m Mrs. Jesalva.  I have been teaching at Fort since 2001, but I have been a teacher since 1989!  In 1993, my husband and I relocated from Virginia to the Philippines for five years where I taught at Cebu International School in Cebu City, Philippines.  I taught ESL, US History and US literature to high-school students mostly from Asia --Japan, Korea, China, and the Philippines, but I also had students from Europe (Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, etc.)  I learned a lot about many different cultures and about teaching ESL during those five years, and I also really gained an appreciation for the USA.  I learned what it is like to be a foreigner in another country and not able to speak the language or understand the culture.  It was a great learning experience which gives me empathy for my students now!  


               I’ve really enjoyed teaching ESL here at Fort.  I have mostly taught Hispanic students from various countries (El Salvador, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Mexico,Venezuela, Cuba, Puerto Rico), but I’ve also taught students from the Congo, Russia, Belarus, the Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Vietnam, China, Serbia, Romania, Brazil, the Philippines, Thailand, and Iraq-- all right here in Augusta County! 


              I see many of my students go through the same stages of assimilation that I did,  as they struggle to learn a new language, make friends, pass SOLs, and go on to graduate and establish careers. It’s a difficult process, but I’ve seen such resilience and determination in many of my students. 


             Our country benefits from immigrants who come with such an appreciation for all the opportunities here in the US and the determination to accomplish their dreams.  The rich diversity of our culture is what makes the US so unique, and we welcome our ESL students at Fort!! 




    Contact Mrs. Jesalva at pjesalva@augusta.k12.va.us
    1st block - Fort Defiance High School
    2nd block - Fort Defiance High School
    3rd block - Stewart Middle School
    4th block - Stewart Middle School
    All students attending Augusta County Public Schools may participate in education programs and activities, including but not limited to health and physical education, music, vocational and technical education.  Educational programs and services will be designed to meet the varying needs of all students and will not discriminate against any individual for reasons of race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, or gender.