Math Teacher & Martial Artist with Roots in Mexico City Passes CBEST Writing and Rejoins Teaching Staff

At a Glance


  • Intermediate English grammar/mechanics

  • English writing conventions

  • Developing counterclaims
  • Eliminating biases


  • Passed CBEST Writing

  • Total Spent: $1377.60

  • Hours Purchased: 27.33

  • Rejoined teaching staff


Completed CBEST Suite
Dante gets to earn a living doing what he loves: helping young people learn to appreciate math. Additionally, he was able to engage in the next steps involved in teacher certification.

Job Stability
Although Dante appreciates having a varied skillset, there’s comfort in knowing that he has options when it comes to financial opportunities. Construction work is seasonal and will eventually wear on his body. Teaching, on the other hand, occurs with almost not regard to weather conditions and is physically damaging only if students are physically threatening.

Increased US English Language Acumen
Dante’s understanding of US English writing conventions has increased.


Dante lost his job as a math teacher because of the difficulties he’d faced trying to pass CBEST Writing. In California, teachers are allotted a grace period for passing CBEST. If that requirement’s not met, teachers lose their ability to operate as teachers of record (until they pass necessary tests).


October 2018, Dante, reached out to get help. Dante and I met for our first learning session on October 10, 2018. For the 3.5 weeks we worked together, we met 3 to 4 times each week for 90 to 120 minutes per session. At the time, during many weeks, Dante had zero days off from the physically demanding job in the construction field. While pinpointing customers’ strengths and weaknesses is important for each customers’ success, it was especially vital in Dante’s case, as his physical and mental stores were being seriously depleted each day. We had to be sure to avoid being overly granular.

We tackled prescriptive writing tenets, vocabulary augmentation, organization, personalized persuasive writing strategies, and detail inclusion, recognizing bias, being objective, considering ostensibly outlandish viewpoints, and objectively addressing those viewpoints that still honored his own perspective. Additionally, we attacked differences between writing in Spanish and English. Initially, I hadn’t known this was an issue. Thank goodness Dante was as confident and communicative as he was. Had he not asked specific questions about Spanish-versus-English-writing tenets, I would not have known this to be an issue. working with Dante, I had just assumed that my customers whose first language is Spanish understood that certain changes aren’t optional. For example, not using an inverted question mark at the beginning of a question.


Our last session date was November 4, 2018. That same month, Dante sat for and passed CBEST Writing. Of course, he passed in a single shot.

In the Customer's Words

“I passed! Kenisha, thank you for your help. This means a lot to me.”

-Dante Chavarrin, Math Teacher, San Ysidro, CA


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