CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Dr. M.L Garza Gonzalez Charter School is making some changes in the next academic year and will now teach grades pre-k-eighth despite one woman who is ensuring the curriculum continues to grow.

Some residents would call Dr. M.L Garza Gonzalez Charter School a hidden gem in Corpus Christi, but superintendent Dee Dee Bernal is ready to make it shine.

"My career has been one great place after another," Bernal said. 

Bernal has been an educator for over 40 years and is currently taking on an additional role after being appointed to the Board of the Education Service Center: Region 2.

"Coming from the public school and now the charter school it gives me the best of both worlds to be able to put my two cents worth," Bernal said. 

Bernal's two cents is worth a lot more than just pennies. Bernal's passion for education is what motivated her to transform the classrooms into places students want to be, and it's not only the students she is helping to inspire

"It's important to create an environment that inspires children. That makes them want to come to school," Bernal said. 

"When you have somebody that's behind you and pushing you to do your best then you're going to do the best for the students as well," math instructor Rosemary Rojas said. 

Since Bernal came on board, the charter school continues to thrive with new programs and more students enrolling.

"We take pride in teaching our students, we grow with them, and I think this would be a perfect environment for many students in the city," Bernal said. 

According to junior Ruben Morin, his experience has been nothing short of life changing.

"Even though this is my first time attending a charter school," Morin said. "I feel welcomed, especially by all the teachers and staff.

Morin aspires to be a meteorologist, he provides daily weather updates for his school and hopes to inspire others as Bernal has inspired him.

"Always remain positive no matter the case may be and always know you will reach that goal," Morin said 

According to Bernal, schools should be more than just books and classrooms.

"A safe place, a place that they feel like somebody is here that loves them and cares about them," Bernal said.