Celebrating Education Support Professionals during American Education Week, November 13-16, 2018
Teacher Aide, Glens Falls Middle School
From being a member of a corporate accounting team to being a member of the educational team at Glens Falls Middle School, Teacher Aide Donna Sharp is one of Glens Falls’ newest and most positive team players! Hired in May of 2018 after a 25-year career in corporate accounting for CR Bard, Inc., Mrs. Sharp now uses her experience to make a difference in the lives of students and GFMS colleagues alike.
“Donna is a calming force in our building,” says Middle School Principal Kristy Moore. “She starts each day with a smile and carries that positive energy with her throughout the day. Donna not only supports her students, but also looks for ways to help her colleagues have a positive experience at work.”
“Having supervisory experience in the corporate world has enabled me to work with many personalities, meet deadlines, and work effectively with others,” says Mrs. Sharp.
“I cannot tell you how much I love being here among such dedicated administrators, faculty and staff,” she continues. “Also, I feel very blessed to be here with these young people and, hopefully, make a positive difference in their lives.”
And she does! As a Teacher Aide, Mrs. Sharp is responsible to review the teachers’ classroom instruction with students one-to-one, to ensure they understand the class and homework requirements. During study hall, she reviews the assignments and helps her learner complete work for the next day. “We study together for upcoming tests, and review questions and assignments,” says Mrs. Sharp.
“She genuinely cares about the students and encourages them to do their best and to be considerate of others,” says Middle School secretary Karen Dwyre. “She is such a positive, pleasant person to be around and is always willing to lend a helping hand to anyone in the building (student or staff member), and does so with a smile.”
“Mrs. Sharp is incredibly patient with everyone she comes in contact with,” says sixth-grade teacher Pat Murphy. “She is kind, compassionate, and always willing to lend a hand. Mrs. Sharp loves what she does, and it is evident in her positive demeanor.”
“I feel the unique skills I bring to the Teacher Aide position is the ability to interface with the teachers efficiently and with students with patience, a caring personality, and knowing how to correct a student with care and fairness while cultivating a safe and encouraging atmosphere,” notes Mrs. Sharp.
“The most rewarding part of being a Teachers Aide is watching the students evolve,” she continues. “I have seen some shy students with no one to talk to, or not being included during recess to play ball, etc. And if I see a student eating alone, I will go and sit and talk with them. I’ll call some of the other students ove
r to introduce them, and I have witnessed the shy student now included in recess and working with others on classroom projects. It makes me smile to see this transformation. It’s all about being kind to one another!”
This summer, Mrs. Sharp surprised the office staff by delivering a homemade lunch. She is a graduate of Fort Edward High School and Albany Business College. “Simply put,” she says, “I love being here at GFMS!!”
Glens Falls City School District celebrates national American Education Week by highlighting our “school superheroes” whose various careers touch the lives of our students and pave the way for success. Education Support Professionals—our teacher aides, teaching assistants, secretaries, custodians, and many other team members—play a crucial role in every school building, every day.