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By Hunter Ristau

Special education teacher Jill Norman

New Special Education Teacher moves from Monticello Trails to Mill Valley

Where are you from?

I am from the the Shawnee area, I was born and raised around Shawnee. I went through the De Soto schools as a child. I graduated from De Soto High School in 1999.

What college did you go to?
I went to Emporia State University.

What year did you graduate?
I graduated in December of 2003.

What made you want to teach high school?
This is my first year teaching high school. I previously worked at Monticello Trails Middle School.

What was your past teaching experience?
When I first graduated college I taught one year of preschool in Emporia then when I moved to the Kansas City area I taught at Monticello Trails for seven years. I did four years as a resource teacher. Then I did three years as a center-based teacher.

What do you think Mill Valley will be like?
I am most excited to be at Mill Valley. I think that it will be a amazing. I have heard great things about the students and just the community that we have here. I’m excited to be apart of it.

What is your favorite part of Mill Valley so far?
It has been great getting to know the other new teachers. As we get to today meeting the current staff and building those relationships. It seems like a very positive place and a very nice place.

What do you want your students to know about you?
Well, I am a mother of four boys. Me and my husband live in the Mill Valley area. As a teacher, I want to have a classroom that is where students can feel welcome and also know that they are trusted and they can be themselves in my classroom and they can respect each other.

What’s your favorite thing about teaching?
I love to see the impact that my teaching can have on my students;helping them gain more knowledge for when they go out to the community so they can have more positive impact in our society.

What made you want to teach SPED?
Growing up, I was a nanny for a family whose son had autism and that lead me into learning more about kids [requiring] special education. Just to know the impact that I can make on their lives.

What traditions have you heard about at Mill Valley?
[Principal Tobie] Waldeck talked to us about how much the atmosphere has changed in the last few years at Mill Valley. I am excited to be apart of that.

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