Arco Iris Spanish Immersion School

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Director's Message

Executive Director, Jesús Urdiales
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Jesús Urdiales comes to us with twenty three years of experience in the field of education, including twelve years teaching in elementary settings, and eleven in administrative positions in different states of the United States as well as abroad. 

Born and raised in Monterrey, Mexico, Jesús has always loved supporting diverse communities through education.  While living in Mexico, Jesús supported adults and children who needed to learn English as a Second Language as they prepared to emigrate to the United States in the pursuit of better living opportunities. Hearing these courageous stories of immigration, Jesús relocated to Houston, TX and became a teacher there, continuing his support of  communities in need of learning English as a Second Language. It was in Houston, TX that he received his Master’s in Administration in Education and Supervision from the University of Houston, eventually moving to the East Coast in 2012 to join a cohort of educators that spearheaded opening different charter schools in partnership with the Delaware Dept of Education (DDOE). 

While working in partnership with the DDOE, Jesús opened a dual language school in Wilmington, DE.  He then assumed different administrative roles with ASPIRA, an organization with close ties to the Hispanic community in Delaware.  He then joined two different communities in Philadelphia, and New Jersey before relocating to Los Angeles in 2019 as the principal for Citizens of the World Charter School in Mar Vista. These valuable experiences helped Jesús understand the educational panorama in the United States more thoroughly.  His focus is not only to support students in learning a second language (Spanish); but, also providing opportunities for students to thrive in their social and emotional growth as well as ensuring the communities he serves operate with an awareness of the values of diversity, inclusivity, and belonging in sch
Most recently, Jesús joined Arco Iris Spanish Immersion School in Beaverton, OR, where he serves as the Executive Director there. Jesús is excited to continue supporting communities who are excited about teaching and seeing students as a whole: supporting them to obtain a multicultural education, aligned with social and emotional development as well as social justice practices.

Outside of work, Jesús enjoys traveling to explore new places and volunteering whenever possible. He enjoys listening to music on vinyl, as well as practicing yoga in his free time.  
assistant director
Assistant Director, Perla Murphy
My name is Perla Murphy and I am the Assistant Director at Arco Iris Spanish Immersion Charter School. I was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. I spent my high school and college years in Puerto Rico and made the move to Portland in 2008. I attended Portland State University and Portland Community College focusing on Engineering and Mathematics. In 2010 I started to work with several schools in the Portland Metro area as a substitute teacher as well as spending several months as a dedicated Kinder through 8th grade Spanish Immersion teacher at a private school. 
In 2011, I was hired by Arco Iris Spanish Immersion School as an instructional assistant to support classroom teachers, as well as to lead their after school program and their lunch program. Working at Arco Iris led me to realize that working in the field of education was my true calling. I completed my BA at Portland State University in Science with a minor in Mathematics while continuing to grow and expand my knowledge of education and education administration at Arco Iris. I moved from direct classroom and teacher support to administration support in 2012 and  I’ve been committed to supporting the school’s mission of bilingual education and equity. I feel a sense of responsibility to share my gift of bilingualism and love for learning with  our students.

Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my husband and our baby boy that we welcomed in 2023. We love exploring places to eat, going on nature walks and spending as much time outside as possible. This is especially true during the nice weather months in the Pacific Northwest! I enjoy listening to music of all genres, but especially Latin music, and attending musical events whenever possible. I look forward to continuing to support the education community by focusing on multicultural education, bilingualism and equity advocacy.