Before teaching at Hope Academy, Sandy Austin taught in a wide variety of school settings – rural, urban, impoverished, affluent, large and small. These experiences helped her learn the importance of relationship-building regardless of the school environment.
According to Sandy, Hope Academy’s high teacher-to-student ratio, along with flexible scheduling, allows teachers to form meaningful and positive relationships with the students and other staff.
As a newer teacher at Hope Academy, Sandy feels like she’s not just teaching classes, but teaching individual students. The smaller class sizes make that possible and allows teachers to work as a team to determine what each student needs to be successful.
“We function very much as a family,” said Sandy. “We support each other through challenges and adversity, we work together to solve problems and overcome obstacles, and we make it a point to celebrate progress as well as victories.”
Sandy feels supported, valued and trusted working at Hope Academy. She loves that strong relationships and community are evident and not just talk, as she has previously experienced. Teaching in a school where all voices are heard and where collaboration is a way of life brings her so much joy.
While teaching at Hope Academy doesn’t come without some challenges, she finds it extremely rewarding to be able to help young adults overcome their various obstacles and reclaim their lives.
“Some of the students I worked most closely with became my personal heroes as I witnessed their perseverance, their resilience and their inner strength. They have my respect and my heart, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for them,” she beamed!