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By Gabby Delpleash

New Media Specialist Ashley Bennett transferred from teaching English at Monticello Trails Middle School.

Ashley Bennett, Media specialist

JagWire: First, tell us a little about yourself.

Ashley Bennett: “This is my 15th year of teaching, my 6th year in the district and 1st year in the Media Center.  I have two children.  Our daughter Logan is in 5th grade and turns 11 next week and our son Caden is 7 and in 2nd grade and both attend Prairie Ridge Elementary.  I’ve been married to my husband, Mike, for 12 years.  He teaches and coaches at Staley High School.”

JW: Describe your college experience.

AB: “​I went to a JUCO in St. Louis for two years before transferring back to KU to get my undergraduate degree in Education. My certification was originally to teach Elementary and Middle School with a minor in English and Science.  I finished my Master’s to become a Library Media Specialist through Pittsburg State in 2017.” 

JW: Why did you decide to go into teaching? 

AB: “​When I was in high school, I got to work with kids a lot in sports camps in the summer.  That really inspired me to go into teaching.  It was so awesome to teach a new skill to a young kid and see the smile on their face when they found success. The joy that gave me was something I knew I wanted to continue.   That experience is why I went into teaching.”

JW: What do you enjoy about teaching? 

AB: “​I enjoy working with my students.  I love getting to make connections with my students and talk to them about how their day is going.  I love building those relationships and helping students find joy in learning and being at school.”

JW: What is your experience with teaching high school students?

AB: “​This will be my first year teaching in a high school.  It really doesn’t feel too strange, though as I know many of the students here after teaching 8th grade English at Monticello Trails MS for the last 5 years.”

JW: What do you want students to know about you?

“​I want students to know that I am here to help them.  I want them to come into the library and talk with me and ask for help if they need it.  I want the library to be a safe space where students feel they can come to relax, get help, or to study.  I want to share my space with them.”

JW: What hobbies do you have?

AB: “​Well, I know this will sound cliche, but I love to read.  I love anything True Crime or based on true crime.  My guilty pleasure is listening to True Crime podcasts.  I also love watching our kids participate in their favorite sports.” 

JW: What is an interesting fact about yourself?

AB: “​I am a sponsor of the brand-new Mill Valley Chapter of the Project LIT Book Club.  We are reading a variety of diverse books this year and discussing them via Zoom or in person.  We will also be connecting with community members and authors to discuss these books and the topics they present.”

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