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Teachers of the Year: Katrina Fox
Teachers of the Year: Katrina Fox
Posted on 06/25/2018
Valley Springs Middle School English language arts teacher Katrina Fox helps a student.By Tim Reaves
BCS Communications Department

Katrina Fox never worried too much about what to do with her life. Her pedagogical passion began early and has continued throughout her 23-year teaching career.

“I really don’t remember any time in my life when I didn’t want to be a teacher,” she said. “I want my students to love learning. What makes my heart leap is when the bell rings and there’s a collective groan. Kids say ‘is time up already?’ And that’s how you know you’ve reached them.”

Fox is Valley Springs Middle School’s 2019 Teacher of the Year, and at the May school board meeting she was named Roberson District Teacher of the Year. The seventh-grade English language arts teacher is a product of Buncombe County Schools and a graduate of T.C. Roberson High School. Fox started out at Glenn Arden Elementary School, where her third-grade teacher, Alice Hart, made an impact that still resonates today.

“She was very compassionate and patient,” Fox said. “The things she did for the students, I thought ‘I want to do that when I grow up.’ She was my role model, and I still keep up with her today.”

Like her mentor, Fox makes her classroom a place of compassion, fun, and humor. She keeps her students engaged through project-based learning — wax museums, poetry cafes, and other fun exercises. She encourages them to learn from their mistakes and to take an active role in their own education.

“If students know that you care, they’re willing to put in the effort to succeed in the classroom,” Fox said.

Former Valley Springs Principal Edward Burchfiel, who retired at the end of the 2017-18 school year, agreed.

“Ms. Fox connects with her kids,” he said. “It motivates them and makes them want to do well. She has high expectations but works with them individually to make sure they succeed. It’s something that defines a great teacher.”

Fox is one of seven classroom teachers selected as a district teacher of the year out of the 1,700 teachers in the BCS system. She and the other six district winners will be featured in an upcoming special video produced by the BCS Communications Department. One of the seven district winners will be selected as the overall BCS Teacher of the Year.

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