Hear from Erin Berthold about community engagement at Wallingford Public Schools.
Wallingford Public Schools understands and values the importance of community involvement in the school system. Initiatives such as “Eat, Play, Unplug” and the “Wallingford 100” engage community stakeholders in the success of our schools. This does not just mean student success; it means success for all involved, including teachers, administrators, parents and families. As a Wallingford educator and resident, I appreciate how involved, invested and intertwined the schools and community are with each other. I am proud to live and teach in Wallingford.
Wearing frilly socks, patent leather shoes, and a brand new backpack bigger than me, I held my mother’s hand as we walked into my preschool classroom. Although I was only four years old, I knew this was the first step of an adventure which would one day culminate in another special outfit: a cap and gown.
Education was respected and expected in my family. Even at four, I knew I would one day go to college as truthfully as I knew my house was red. While I was brought up to value education, and come from a family of teachers, I did not aspire to be one myself. After trying on other potential careers, nothing fit quite right. My mother suggested I spend a day at her school while I was home on a college break. She always told me I would be a great teacher, but she never pushed me into her profession. One day was all I needed to realize what she knew all along: I was meant to be an educator.
After over a decade of teaching, I can’t imagine myself doing anything else. It has been a privilege to work with children of all ages, instilling in them the same respect for education that was instilled in me. I want all of my students, whether kindergarteners or high school seniors, to visualize themselves in graduation regalia holding their well-deserved diploma. I may only have my students for one short leg of their educational journey, but in that time I hope to inspire them to love and value learning while holding themselves to high expectations. No matter what career path my students pursue, I know a quality education is crucial to their success.
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