Latina Teacher Becomes a Hero by Helping a Mother Give Birth at an Elementary School
For bilingual teacher Maria Perez Caraballo, winter mornings at Kleberg Elementary School in Dallas are almost always quiet.
Except when they’re not.
Loren Carcamo, the pregnant mother of an elementary school student, was coming to pick up her daughter to take her home when her water suddenly broke.
The people around her called the school nurse, but she had no experience in childbirth. Maria, however, did.
As Telemundo reported, after hearing her name over the school loudspeaker, Perez Caraballo ran to the nurse’s office, where she found her helping the mother with her contractions.
“In my head, I was panicking,” said school nurse Tylar Krause. “I yelled out to the front office — ‘please get me someone in here who’s at least had a baby in their life’ because I needed an extra set of hands.”
Perez Caraballo was a doctor in an obstetrics and gynecology department in Venezuela for three years before moving to Costa Rica and then to the United States. Upon examining the mother, the Venezuelan realized they would not have time to go to the hospital.
The baby was tangled in the umbilical cord, and labor was going to be complicated.
“Mrs. Perez was holding my hand, helping with everything. It was so easy,” Carcamo said.
But with the paramedics’ help, Perez Caraballo became a hero
“When the baby was born, about 10 seconds later, she started crying really loud,” Perez Caraballo said. “It was very beautiful. I’m glad it’s a happy story.”
Thanks to the teacher’s expertise, the mother and daughter were transported safely to the hospital.
“I’m going to treasure this,” Perez Caraballo said. “I came to this country, and I studied a lot to become a teacher, so it was like I said goodbye to those days in medicine. It was really amazing. I feel really happy to have had one more experience in this science area that I worked a lot in.”
For the Venezuelan teacher, the most important thing is that everything went well.
“Mrs. Cárcamo is very grateful to us because we did the best we could with what we had in the nurse’s office,” said Pérez Caraballo. “It was a really unique experience, and I think it made Kleberg a more special place.”
In January, Carcamo happily returned to Kleberg Elementary School, along with her newborn, to meet Perez Caraballo and have their picture taken together.
Principal Amy Zbylut added that she is grateful for Perez Caraballo’s support of her students and the Kleberg community.
“Ms. Perez goes beyond her classroom to support her students and the Kleberg community. Perez goes beyond her classroom to support campus-wide initiatives and the community,” Zbylut said. “As our debate team sponsor, she trains our students in public speaking, grace under pressure, and critical thinking. She assists our campus with our diabetic students when the nurse is off campus, she assists with translating during parent meetings to create an inclusive environment, and she participates in campus-wide community engagement events that strengthen school-community relationships.”