Andrés Ochoa Ceja

Operations Specialist
Ventura County Office of Education
California Hub | USA

Andrés, eldest of three, was born and raised in Moorpark, California, by two wonderful parents along with guidance and support from his large extended family. He is a first generation United States citizen, with familial roots in Michoacán, Mexico, thanks to the effort and dedication of his grandparents, parents, and aunts and uncles.

He is considered an English Learning student, as Spanish is his native language, and praises his bilingual teachers from Kindergarten and First Grade for being exceptional Latina role models. He worked for Moorpark Unified School District as a paraeducator from 2008-2015, working primarily with students deemed as English Learning. Andrés is an advocate for bilingual instruction with a culturally responsive lens, as he has greatly benefited from such a program in early childhood.

Andrés has played organized basketball, soccer, and baseball for a little over a decade and greatly enjoyed being a Freshman Baseball Coach for Moorpark High School from 2013-2015. He was also part of the West Team, as a pitcher, for the Big League World Series in 2007, which gave him the opportunity to experience the baseball community at an international level.

He has also done paraeducator work for the Ventura County Office of Education by working to support students with social-emotional and behavioral needs as well as students with moderate to severe disabilities. He attributes his patience, big heart, and willingness to help his community to his amazing mom, preschool teacher of about 25 years, and the rest of his loving extended family.

He is currently working as part of the System of Support for Expanded Learning in California with the Expanded Learning Department at the Ventura County Office of Education. He was introduced to Compassionate Systems by Ernesto Duran, his current boss and role model. Andrés is drawn to the work of becoming a Compassionate Systems Master Practitioner for the purpose of growing more aware of himself, how he relates to others and how he shows up in the larger community and how he can foster social well-being.