Looking back on my school days, I used to wish that Monday would never come. I stood looking at the school doors; my tummy would heave and wish the doors would just lock me out. However, I had no choice other than to walk through those doors. So, like all good little girls, I would do as I was told, raise my hand for teacher approval, lace my fingers above my desk and sit up straight waiting for each daily routine to flow into the next until the monotonous day was over. I would race my brother home eager for the adventures that awaited me ­ craw fishing, kick the can, figure skating lessons, and curling up with my favorite book.

I became a teacher because I have always known the power of our youth. I know their potential, and I believe in their futures! They are the ones that one day we will all rely on! To be a small part of helping each of our Raymond students to achieve academically and socially is one of my greatest blessings. So, today, I still come to school every day, BUT NOW I RUN TO SCHOOL NOT AWAY FROM IT, FOR THE ADVENTURES ARE AT RAYMOND SCHOOL.

Why is each day at Raymond an adventure you ask? Once you enter our Raymond home and are within the walls of our little country school, you are instantly surrounded by a strong sense of community, family, warmth, and happiness. In every hallway and around every corner, you are greeted by smiles from staff and students alike.

The child comes first at Raymond. I have taught at many schools in my career, but Raymond is my home. This is where children are loved first. Achievement and success are our priority, but we know we will never help them to get there without believing in them and loving them as our own before anything else.

The staff and administration work hard everyday to help each student to feel safe, accepted, and to celebrate each of their unique characteristics and abilities. Nowhere else have I witnessed educators reaching students more efficiently by tapping into their interests and aptitudes and being mindful of each individual’s learning style. Nowhere else have I witnessed stronger teacher/student bonds. Raymond knows that it is not about teaching a lesson and then giving a test, but rather about giving daily tests that teach our students life lessons.

As a testament to the unique atmosphere here, every year, alumni return to us well into high school, college, and their adult years to visit this place they still call home. Raymond is a place that never leaves them.

Being a teacher here is about being a part of a family. Students become a part of us forever nurturing and strengthening our roots. Raymond is about the students today and the students of yesterday. It is they who inspire us each and every day to grow into the future and to continue to make a difference. Raymond is about family, acceptance, emotional and educational success. Raymond is about heart, and as they say, home is where the heart is.

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