Taylor Ray Elementary School
Lamar Consolidated Independent School District
Benjamin Perez has served as principal of Taylor Ray Elementary for 11 years and is a model of his school’s motto, “Failure Is Not an Option.” Perez ensures his school lives up to that expectation by building strong connections with students, families, and staff in order to ensure success and provide each child with opportunities to develop their strengths, talents, and abilities. Despite high mobility and participation in the free and reduced-price lunch program, Taylor Ray has achieved a consistent passing rate on the STAAR and was selected as the P-16 model school for the county. A strong focus on individualized assessments, targeted tutoring, and intervention specialists characterizes Perez’s pedagogical approach. Perez has added a successful twice-weekly after-school homework assistance program, along with tutoring availability before school for struggling math or reading learners. Monthly meetings of vertical teacher teams review assessment data, share ideas, and ensure that instruction is aligned through grade levels. Perez is dedicated to providing professional development opportunities to his staff, and he has mentored seven teachers who have gone on to become principals or assistant principals. Having grown up in the Rosenberg community, Perez epitomizes the idea of giving back, and the district’s Superintendent of Schools explains that “what truly sets Ben apart from the rest is his passion for people.” Perez holds a B.A. from the University of Houston-Downtown and an M.Ed. from the University of Houston-Victoria.