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Michelle Chao
Faculty
(her/she/ella)
Early Childhood Education
working remotely

Please call me Michelle! My pronouns are she/her/ella.

I have been teaching at Cabrillo College and in the Early Childhood Education Department since 2001. I started as a bilingual elementary school teacher in Santa Cruz in1997. How time flies!


I grew up in Southern California in a bilingual, Spanish speaking home. I am the daughter of immigrants and identify as Latinx.

I am the proud and busy mother of two children. We identify as a transracial family with American, Latinx and Ethiopian roots. You may see my children's pictures scattered throughout my courses. They are my greatest teachers and I have found that there is always something new to learn as a parent, teacher, and life-long learner.

I attended community college to achieve my academic and professional goals in southern California, then transferred to the University of California, Santa Cruz to complete my B.A. in Politics and Psychology. I obtained my Master's degree in Education and teaching credential at San Jose State College while working as a full-time teacher and attending night classes. I personally understand how busy and challenging students' lives can be in terms of balancing the needs of family, work, and school.

I consider myself an anti-racist educator and strive to serve and empower all students. Some of my areas of specialization include bilingual education, issues related to social justice, equity and inclusion, anti-bias education, partnering with families, positive guidance and social emotional development. I am also a resource for issues related to adoption and foster care.

I feel privileged to work at Cabrillo College and hope to support you in your academic and professional journey. 

Michelle Chao

Office Hours (on Zoom)

ECE31: Monday and Wednesday 11am-12pm

ECE32: Tuesday and Thursday 11am-12pm