8th Grade Center – Kelsey McAfee, English
English teacher Kelsey McAfee has been the 8th Grade Center Teacher of the Year.
“I became a teacher because I wholeheartedly believe that education can be the great equalizer,” McAfee said. “When provided with a free and excellent education, students are able to accomplish their goals and to create meaningful lives for themselves regardless of their circumstances. I wanted to be a part of the process that encourages young people to pursue their futures with hope and excitement for opportunity. I specifically wanted to become a middle school English teacher because I believe that reading and writing are the essential life skills. They are tools for academia, creativity, communication, business, Social and Emotional Learning – everything. Middle school students are in a critical time in their lives for learning how to advocate for and express themselves, and teaching these students to read and write more effectively is an impactful part of that development.”
She started teaching at Union during the 2018-2019 academic year.
“My career in public education began in 2015,” she said. “Between the ‘Teacher Walkout,’ recent political and social climate, and a global pandemic, I have quickly learned that teaching requires constant flexibility, endless patience and wild creativity. All that considered, my experience in the classroom this year has been excellent. I am still working hard every day to become a master of my craft, but this is the first year that I have felt in a comfortable groove by October. I hit the jackpot with the mix of students I have this year, too. They are friendly, respectful, genuine, and willing to learn. I couldn’t ask for a greater group of students.”