Ms. Armistead poses outside the media center.

Congratulations to A.C. Reynolds High School Media Coordinator Leigh Armistead, Buncombe County Schools’ (BCS) inaugural Media Coordinator of the Year!

A team of Reynolds High and Central Services leadership staff surprised Ms. Armistead in the school’s media center on Friday. She received balloons and flowers while wearing a “fabulous” green and gold tutu skirt and a crown – in preparation for a pep rally later that day.

“Reynolds High School would not be Reynolds High School without Ms. Armistead,” said Principal Ben Alexander. “Everything – computers, books, helping kids, talking with kids, being with kids – she’s all about it, and we love her so much.”

Armistead’s coworkers call her the hub of the school’s faculty who keeps a finger on the pulse of student interests and makes sure the media center has what it needs.

“Leigh not only provides tech assistance to teachers and students, but she actively seeks ways to engage the students and teachers with tech integration via her Media Minute newsletter and by collaborating with teachers on lessons to use tech such as VR and 3D printing,” read one of the nomination letters. “Leigh’s biggest strength, however, is how she cultivates a welcoming space for students and teachers. She builds relationships and is genuine in her efforts to support her school community.”

Media coordinators like Ms. Armistead promote a collaborative learning community, both inside and outside the library walls, that engages students to read, explore, analyze, reflect, synthesize, and create new ideas and information to adapt and contribute to a global society.

“I see being a media coordinator as a way to be a partner in learning, a collaborator with the whole school, not just my classroom of students,” Ms. Armistead explained. “I want to be the person other media coordinators have been for me – being there for teachers and students in whatever way is needed.”

She was the first media coordinator to buy and implement virtual reality headsets in 2019. This year, she won a Buncombe County Schools Foundation grant to buy books for her school’s Multi-Language Learners, Occupational Course of Study students, and Intensive Intervention students.

Ms. Armistead has been with BCS for 20 years. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Dramatic Arts and a Master of Arts in Teaching degree, both from UNC-Chapel Hill. She also is a National Board-Certified Teacher. She is married and has two beautiful daughters.

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