History of AMAE
The Association of Mexican American Educators was formed in 1965. It was born in conflict with the existing educational system and its inequality of educational opportunity for all students, in particular Mexican/Latino students.
AMAE was organized to address the problems facing our students in the schools. Efforts were directed toward the elimination of English only rules, toward scholarships to encourage students to continue their education, and toward a drive to attract more Latinos to educational careers and into positions of leadership and influence.
Today, chapters throughout the state of California continue AMAE’s mission.
To ensure equal access to financial resources for a quality education for Mexican American/Latino students at all levels, validate and affirm cultural and linguistic diversity, advise local/state boards, legislators, administrators, and faculty on educational and financial policy, working partnership with parents and communities for the benefit of our students, retention, support, and development of Mexican American/Latino educators and all others committed to a top quality education in the 21st Century for our students.
“El Fuego Nuevo”
The history behind the logo…
The AMAE logo is “El Fuego Nuevo,” which is interpreted as “The New Fire.” It was designed about three years after the conception of the association, according to Frank Armendariz, founder and designer of the logo.
Many centuries ago, in pre-Columbian Mexico, the natives indulged in a special worry every 52 years. Basis for this fear was the closing of the astronomical cycle–the Venus calendar — which was called NEMONTEMI, existed between each 52-day cycle which didn’t fit into the calendar’s mathematical calculations. There was no scientific explanation for them, so they were used for prayer, meditation, and general suspense. Everything of ceremonial significance was destroyed. Temples were torn down, and dishes were broken, all in reaction to the uncharted and uncontrolled interval between the Old and New Fires. Following NEMONTEMI, when the world didn’t end, the New Fire was lighted on the volcanoes. The instant it was sighted, other New Fires were kindled throughout the land, welcoming a new era for humankind to use as a platform for a fuller life. It was a time for spiritual renewal, a time to gain greater knowledge and to chart greater deeds.
Creed of the Latino Educator
- “I believe in accepting each child with the enrichment brought from home, and in using the child’s experiences, language and culture as vehicles for better instruction.
- I believe in promoting brotherhood, in teaching all children to love their culture and to respect the culture of others.
- I believe in developing in each child a positive self-concept.
- I believe in including parents in all phases of the educational program.
- I believe in continuing my education in order to continue learning with the children.
- Therefore, I believe in the role of the Latino Educator and accept the challenge it offers me.”