AHSFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — At Ashford Schools, they pride themselves on community. Building the community starts when they are students and it grows from there.
For instance, Maryam Salman was once a student who transferred to Ashford when she was in third grade, “When I came here I didn’t know any English and the teachers were so supportive. Teachers would take their lunch breaks and come and teach me and my siblings English.”
It was that gesture that stuck with Salman and encouraged her to pursue a career in teaching. She tells News 8 she went to college to become a nurse initially, “My third semester of college I decided to leave nursing and go to teaching because of Ashford school.”
She is not alone, many other teachers in the school were once students themselves. Their community goes beyond that and beyond generations. For teacher Josie Borisevich, she followed in her mother’s footsteps. She tells News 8, “My mom was a special education teacher here.”
Now, she is a special education teacher herself and her mom, “Now she’s the assistant principal here at school.”
Principal Troy Hopkins is also the assistant superintendent and he says building a strong, close-knit community is his priority.
During the pandemic, building an encouraging community is important more than ever. That’s why he’s decided to give every teacher a heart of construction paper and encourage other staff members to write positive notes, “So we’re basically filling each other’s hearts.”
Hopkins continues to say, “Yes it actually helps us get through this tough pandemic time.”
A small gesture that’s making a big impact and letting his staff know just how appreciated they are within their school community.