#LatinosTeach, Recognizing Edwin Castillo


Edwin Castillo is a product of two Mexican immigrants that arrived in the U.S. in the 70’s. Thanks to their support and motivation, he was able to achieve a Bachelor’s degree in Math and a Masters in Teaching from University of California, Irvine. After college, he spent the first seven years of his career teaching math in urban schools. As a teacher, he was able to positively impact the lives of thousands of students. He is deeply passionate about creating systemic and progressive change in underserved communities and believes the best way to do that is through empowering youth. He is now in his ninth year in the field of education as the Dean of Students at Simon Technology Academy HS in Watts, Los Angeles. As a school administrator, he is able to take a more global approach to helping students and teachers be successful. As a former student of the hood, he knows what it took to rise up against adversity and promote that to his students on a daily basis. In his free time he enjoys watching and playing basketball and dabbles in acrylic painting.

Why do you teach? As a youngster I admired my teachers. They symbolized the person I wanted to be. I teach because I feel it is my duty to give back to communities that provided me with the opportunity to have a happy life.

What do you love about teaching? The kids. Creating those meaningful connections is the name of the game. I got in the teaching game to help kids, but in reality, they are the ones that motivate me. I can’t imagine doing anything else.

When you were a student, was there a great teacher who inspired you? My 11th grade physics teacher, Dr. Reynolds, had an unmatched passion for science and math that stuck with me throughout college and career. I owe him a great deal of gratitude for his guidance. He is the teacher I strived to be.