Local teacher heads into school year ready to face the challenge of the pandemic

Local News

MANHATTAN, Kan. (KSNT) – Teachers across northeast Kansas are preparing to head back to school.
But with the pandemic, this year is more challenging than most.

Kelly Carmody has been teaching for more than 15 years now. She loves her job as a 6th grade teacher at Manhattan’s Woodrow Wilson Elementary School.

During the second part of last school year the pandemic caught her, and every other educator, by surprise.

“I thought okay, the end of the year will be this way but now moving forward the school year will be normal. That’s what I thought in my brain,” Carmody said.

Of course, the pandemic is lasting longer than many people expected, making this school year an unusual one.

“I don’t know what it will be like,” Carmody said. “I’m excited. I think that it will be day by day.”

She’s had some moments of apprehension, but she decided to embody the mantras on her classroom walls and face the year with positivity.

“It wasn’t until I was back in my room with all my feels that made me feel like ‘Yes, this is where I need to be,'” Carmody said. “Whether kids are seeing this virtually or in the classroom I’m not going to treat it any differently. It’s just a new year and a new challenge.”

Now she’s ready for that challenge.

“Teachers love kids and we want to make this year safe and as best as it can possibly be,” Carmody said.

After all, she says, teaching is all about solving problems and helping others do the same.

“Every day we ask students to do things that are uncomfortable. Now we’re being uncomfortable and we can grow during this just as students can,” Carmody said.

Mrs. Carmody and her fellow teachers are headed back to their school on Thursday for some training for the upcoming school year.

KSNT News has been keeping track of the plans local districts are making in northeast Kansas for you. You can find the full list here.

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