New teachers gear up for school year

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We are nearly two weeks away from the start of a new school year and teachers are busy at work preparing their classrooms.

The start of a new school year can be a big transition for kids. At Bel-Aire Elementary School in Gulfport, a couple of teachers are making a new transition as well. Yolonda Jenkins is entering her 14th year of teaching and her first at Bel-Aire after moving from Magee, Mississippi. She says the transition to the Gulf Coast is going smoothly so far. “One thing I’ve noticed is everyone is so nice. When we go into stores, they’re so nice. Since I’ve been at the school working, it’s been so nice and welcoming.”

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After teaching fourth grade last year, Jenkins says third grade can be an exciting and transitional year for students. “So, it’s a very interesting year. I’ll also add it’s a very fun year because, to me as a teacher, I enjoy seeing them go through that and make that shift in life where they’re trying to understand the world a little better.”

Fourth-year teacher Kayla White returns to the Mississippi Coast following a year teaching in Seattle. She is excited to prepare her classroom for her students. “I really wanted to make my classroom a home-feel experience so that my students can be comfortable, coming in with positive, high expectations for them.”

White also says the positive support from teachers and administrators at Bel-Aire have her ready for the new year. “I feel confident and comfortable. I believe I truly made a great choice with Bel-Aire and the Harrison County School District.”



Both teachers have a little advice for their future students before school starts on August 8th. “I’m going to expect for you to do your best and I’m not going to take anything less,” said Jenkins.

White said, “Just come with a positive attitude and be ready to learn.”