MiMi: Did you always know you wanted to be in the field of education?
P.S: As a second-grader at Tuscarora Valley Elementary School in Juniata County School District, I knew I would either become a NASCAR driver or an elementary school teacher, just like my 2nd-grade teacher Mrs. Kauffman. Mrs. Kauffman made each and every one of her students love school, just as I hope I did in my 16 years experience teaching elementary school.
MiMi: How many years have you worked in this field?
P.S: I am currently working on my 18th year in education. I served my first 4 years as a teacher in the Juniata County School District as a 2nd-grade teacher. I then followed my mentor’s advice and took a teaching position in the heart of Philadelphia at General Phillip Kearny Elementary School. I spent eleven years there before accepting the Assistant Principal position here at Donald E. Schick Elementary School.
MiMi: Do you feel as though you are a mentor to children?
P.S: I would like to think I am a mentor for some of the children as far as setting a good example for them. I currently see myself more like a guardrail. The more I look deeper into the research done on education and how we are educating today’s children for something we have no clue exists in the future, well; I can only hope I can assist in the base of a well designed educational system.
MiMi: What is the best part of your job?
P.S: My favorite quote is from Confucius, and it says it all for me. “If you love what you do, you will never have to work another day in your life.” The best part of my job? After two and a half years in my position, I have yet to see the same day twice. Every day is a new experience, and when you work with children; what could be better? Seeing a child smile is what makes my day. Nothing is better than being greeted with 700 “good mornings” and 700 “high fives or smiles” as the children all go home for the night. I love what I do!