Calculating the Odds of Victory


Anna Turnbull, Editor-In-Chief

Samantha McCaffery, a teacher of advanced courses, is not just an average educator.

“I really want to meet their [students] needs and I teach really difficult classes on the math side, so I teach AP Calculus and College Algebra. I work with kids facing challenges and I really like helping them figure out how to conquer those challenges,” said McCaffery. 

When it comes to McCaffery’s students, helping them with struggles is what she does best.

“I work with kids one-on-one a ton and that’s a lot of work on me but I think it’s what they need most, so if something’s going on at home kids in my room know that they are people first and that their value as a person has nothing to do with their test score or their letter grade,” said McCaffery. “If they really are struggling with something we work out a plan that helps meet their needs.”

Although this year, staff and students recognized McCaffery as outstanding from the others.

“An email goes out to all of us that work in the district where you can nominate someone and there’s a form that you have to fill out for the teacher of the year award. Then people go over all of those forms and nominations and they always choose one from each school level, so there were four of us,” said McCaffery. “Once they pick those four then there is an extensive process; they do a video spot on you and what you do with students, they do some video of you in your classroom, then you submit some written responses and go for an interview over at district office.”

Park Hill is very proud to have a Teacher of the Year nominee and McCaffery shares the same gratefulness to be teaching in the district.

“I love that we have high standards and that we truly believe that every kid can achieve those standards. It’s really nice to come to work in a building where my peers and teachers help make me better. I love hearing what they’re doing and I can learn from what they’re doing and try new things. I love helping students figure out where they want to go in life and how to get there,” said McCaffery. “This has been a really nice process to hear that all of the hard work I put in gets noticed, I’m just really thankful.”