Cedar Hill Mom Pursuing Dream That Will Take Her From School Custodian To School Administrator

Cedar Hill, TX - For 20-year-old Dania Villatoro-Reyes maintaining a positive attitude is a must. She says, “being a single mom was hard. I don’t want them [her children] to see me like a failure.”

Dania has two sons — ages 3 and 5-years-old. They are her pride and joy.


It was during the start of the COVID pandemic that Dania surveyed her circumstance and put a plan in motion. For two years she held a job as a custodian in the Cedar Hill Independent School District. Never did she lose sight of her bucket list of things she could accomplish. She stayed focused and always thought success was within her reach if she worked hard enough.

In her words, “At first, I said, ‘there’s no way I can get there.’ But then I saw myself and I was like, ‘You know what? I don’t want to be a custodian. I want to be something else.'” That meant completing her high school diploma at a school in Duncanville, while maintaining her job and childcare responsibilities… no small accomplishment.

She explains, “I’m actually the first one to graduate from my family, so that was like a big thing to me and seeing my mom being so happy.”

Villatoro-Reyes now has even more to celebrate. Prior to this school year, she was hired as a bilingual attendance clerk at Highlands Elementary School in Cedar Hill.

Principal Candice Griffin said, “We’re just excited to have her and just be a part of her pathway for wherever it is that she is moving towards.”

For Dania reaching one goal is not enough, setting the next one is key. In this case, that means getting her undergraduate and masters degrees one day and becoming a principal herself, because teaching is a work of heart.

“That just speaks to her character and who she is as a person, to come and persevere everyday and do the things that she needs to do to get ahead for herself and for her family,” Griffin said.

To all those chasing their dreams Dania’s message is, “You will get there no matter what. When you’re determined to do something you’re gonna make it.”

For the record, Dania said she learned a lot during her time as a custodian and that it is a very respectable job. But she says she wants to teach her two young boys that you can be anything in life you want to be.

Source: CBSdfw