Last year marked the departure of four integral parts of the ORR high school faculty; each carried their weight in teaching skills as well as intellect. This year marks the arrival of three young, bright, new minds with their eyes set on similar sights.
There are two different departments in the school represented by the new teachers: the Science Department and the English Department. Ms. Champagne, a Chemistry teacher, jumped right into her new job teaching classes such as AP Chemistry, Chemistry A, and Essentials of Chemistry. She enthusiastically fills a vital role that was left empty by the egress of Ms. Sullivan.
The English Department suffered a colossal loss last year with three significant teachers leaving their classrooms at ORR: Mrs. Johnson, Ms. Ribeiro and Ms. Dall. Each held their jobs as educators in the highest esteem and had an incalculable impact on their students.
Amy Medeiros, a graduate of Bridgewater State University, fills one of the open spots. She began teaching here last year as a long-term substitute, but has a classroom all to herself for the first time this year. She chose Old Rochester as one of her top three schools to perform her student teaching and was thrilled when asked to stay.
She teaches freshman, sophomore and junior-year English classes, and states that while it is more work and more responsibility, it is a “good challenge.” While she loves English in general, sophomore-year English, or American Literature, is her favorite.
As a full-time teacher, she gets her own homeroom, develops a curriculum, and she feels students “don’t compare [her] to other teachers” as they often did when she was a long-term substitute. Her passion for teaching came to her during her senior year of high school. She had a teacher that inspired her and it “really rubbed off.”
When asked her opinion of our school in general, she responded with a simple, “I love it.” Her appreciation for the “awesome students” and “supportive, collaborative environment” has made her time here so far pleasant all-around.
Michael Beson, a graduate from Fordham University and Union College, also joins the department. In his second full year of teaching, Mr. Beson taught in Winthrop, MA last school year. He believes his choice of Old Rochester to be a good one: he believes the class sizes to be “perfect” and the environment to be “incredibly positive.”
He commented that he has seen “harder-working students here in two weeks than all year” at his other school. He believes it makes a big difference when “students have ownership of their work.” He teaches freshmen, juniors and has a Creative Writing elective. His favorite subject to teach is his Creative Writing class. He remarked that while writing is something “most students struggle with,” it is his favorite to teach because it is “the most rewarding.”
His passion for teaching stemmed from his aversion of continuing working “Nine to five in the corporate world.” He grew sick of not being able to laugh or smile or be happy doing his job. According to him, “not a day goes by where I don’t do that in the classroom.”