Career educator appreciates Great Teachers initiative

Students share inspiring tales of teachers who make a difference

Camosun College president Sherri Bell is proud to be a part of the Great Teachers initiative. The series of stories by Black Press, sponsored by Staples in co-operation with Camosun College, highlights the amazing work teachers do in educating our children and shaping the future of our communities.

“Any time we get to honour teachers from kindergarten to Grade 12 or at the college or university level is a worthwhile endeavour,” said Bell, who is completing her first year as president of the institution. “They inspire learning and passion in students in areas they aren’t familiar with.”

Bell, the former superintendent of schools for School District 61, said she’s had the pleasure of working with a multitude of amazing teachers throughout her career. She began teaching in 1981, and has worked at all levels of education up to university, as well as a number of years at the administrative level with the Victoria School District.

“The impact teachers can have on an entire class is phenomenal,” she noted. “That experience with teachers who engage students in sports, leadership, clubs and education is what inspires young people to take courses in college or university. So much of what teachers do has a tremendous impact on our communities.”

Bell was eager to share a story about one of her former middle school students who approached her at Camosun after an earthquake preparedness drill.

“He said the teachers he had are what inspired him to pursue a career teaching history,” she recalled. “It’s stories like that that make education such a wonderful profession.”

If you would like to nominate a teacher for Black Press Great Teachers, go to SaanichNews.com, click on the Great Teachers icon, and tell us why you think they are deserving before May 29.

 

 

Librarian sparks student’s interest in written word

A friend of the family who works as a school librarian has played a major role nurturing a passion for the written word for Paige Cumming.

“I’ve known Jean Prevost, a school librarian and friend of my auntie, teacher Lisa Kinshella, since I was four,” said Cumming, a 14-year-old Grade 8 student at Royal Oak middle school.

“She sparked my creativity when I was really young. She introduced me to reading, one of my favourite activities, as well as music, and got me interested in writing.”

That has inspired Cumming to incorporate writing into her career choices, which involve journalism, teaching and photography.

“I want to include writing and something creative into whatever I do. My main focus is school, which I really enjoy,” she said. “I’m strong in every subject, and really enjoy math and English. We have a great environment at our school with an amazing group of teachers who are very supportive.”

Cumming, who plays guitar and “dabbles in a little piano,” said she enjoys all music, with the exception of “screaming punk rock.” She plays baseball, volleyball and basketball as well, and is already looking forward to college or university. “I enjoy gaining knowledge,” she added. “I also want to travel and see the diversity of the world and different cultures. Those experiences can only help as a writer.”

Secondary School

Instead of slowing him down, dealing with a serious illness since he was eight years of age set Roberto Fedrigo squarely on a path devoted to helping others. The 17-year-old Grade 12 Claremont secondary student, who has teenage rheumatoid arthritis, decided at an early age that he wants to pursue a career in medical sciences.

“The care I received made me want to dedicate my life to helping others,” he explained.

Fedrigo volunteers at Victoria General Hospital and interns doing research at the B.C. Cancer Agency in his quest toward a career in medicine.

He credits science teacher Sean Hayes with assisting him throughout the process. “He’s taken the time to help me choose my university courses for next year,” Fedrigo said. “He’s very approachable and very helpful. Overall, the teachers at my school are top notch. They are heavily invested in your education and genuinely care about their students.”

Despite a medical condition that limits physical activity like sports, Fedrigo has been a competitive swimmer or the past 12 years. “It’s taught me time management skills and perseverance,” qualities that will lend themselves well in his field of choice.

 

Elementary School

Having a teacher who shares a passion for athletics is one of the reasons Cameron Johnsen enjoys his time at Kelset elementary school.

“We have a lot in common because we’re both really into sports ,” says the 11-year-old Grade 5 student. “She’s one of my favourite teachers ever because she knows what she’s doing and she makes it fun. The whole class really likes her.”

Johnsen said another quality in his teacher, Sara Postlethwaite, that he admires is her ability to engage everyone in her class. “She does a great job of getting everyone interested in a bunch of different subjects.”

He added science and art as subjects he enjoys, although gym, hockey, baseball and motocross are activities he pursues with a particular passion.

“I want to be a professional hockey player,” he said. “My dad and I are big Canucks fans and Bo Horvat is my favourite player.”

As much as he enjoys school on most days, Johnsen said he is looking forward to the end of the school year so he can spend more time with the family out on their boat.

“I really like fishing,” he added.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Fire Chief Darren Hughes, right, pulls the old Firemans Park sign off ahead of the parks name change. The new sign for Firefighters Park is coming. (Oak Bay Fire Department Twitter)
Oak Bay changes the name of Fireman’s Park

New sign for Firefighter’s Park on the way

Friends have identified the man killed in Friday’s shooting in Metchosin as Shane Wilson. (Shane Wilson/Facebook)
West Shore RCMP continue to investigate shooting death in Metchosin

Man killed on Sooke Road Friday night identified by friends

The WHL’s Victoria Royals will compete in a 24-game season starting March 26, <strong></strong>based out of a Kamloops and Kelowna B.C. division bubble (Kevin Light/Courtesy Victoria Royals)
‘Important to cherish every moment’: Victoria Royals not taking bubble season for granted

The Victoria WHL team’s coach and GM calls the season a ‘privilege,’ expects fierce rivalries

Oaklands Elementary’s Division 5 Grade 4/5 class posed with Leila Bui (middle), her dad Tuan Bui (crouching to her left) and mom Kairry Nguyen (right) after presenting the family with a cheque for $710 raised by the students during a necklace sale in December 2020. (Photos courtesy Kairry Nguyen)
Victoria students raise funds for girl seriously injured when struck by vehicle in crosswalk

Oaklands Elementary class contributes to purchase of all-terrain wheelchair for Leila Bui

The Victoria Fire Department was able to contain a fire to one room after a bed placed directly against a heater ignited. (Black Press Media file photo)
Early morning Victoria balcony fire causes $20,000 in damages

Victoria Fire Department said nobody was injured in the fire on View Street

Const. Nancy Saggar, who has 11 years in policing, offers advice for other women who may pursue both policing and family. (Black Press Media file photo)
Pregnancy prompts sage advice from RCMP officer for women thinking about policing

West Shore constable with 11 years experience heads off on maternity leave

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix provide a regular update on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, March 2, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 cases: 545 Saturday, 532 Sunday, 385 Monday

Focus on Prince Rupert, Lower Mainland large workplaces

(BC SPCA)
Is it safe to give your dog some peanut butter? Not always, BC SPCA warns

Some commercial peanut butter ingredients can be harmful to dogs

Anyone with information is asked to call Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or contact Crime Stoppers by calling 1-800-222-8477 or submitting a tip online at www.nanaimocrimestoppers.com.
21-year-old motorbike rider dies after crash with ATV on Nanaimo back road

Incident happened Sunday afternoon near Boomerang Lake

Rising accident rates and payout costs have contributed to billion-dollar deficits at ICBC. (Comox Valley Record)
B.C. appealing decision keeping ICBC injury cases in court

David Eby vows to ‘clip wings’ of personal injury lawyers

A special committee has been appointed to look at reforming B.C.’s police act and is inviting the public to make submissions until April 30, 2021. (Black Press media file)
Have thoughts on B.C.’s review of the provincial Police Act?

Submissions will be accepted until April 30

Excerpts from a conversation between Bria Fisher and the fake truLOCAL job. Fisher had signed a job agreement and was prepared to start work for what she thought was truLOCAL before she learned it was a scam. (Contributed)
B.C. woman warning others after losing $3,000 in job scam

Bria Fisher was hired by what she thought was a Canadian company, only to be out thousands

Cottonwoods Care Home in Kelowna. (Google Maps)
New COVID-19 outbreak at Kelowna care home includes fully vaccinated seniors: Henry

Two staff and 10 residents tested positive at Cottonwoods Care Centre

Most Read