Ashley Roberts may only be in her first year as the science teacher at Peetz Junior High/High School, but she’s already making a strong impact.
Superintendent Jeff Durbin called her a “tremendous asset to Peetz School and its students” in his Crystal Apple Award nomination and said since taking the reins on the science program, she has moved students in the right direction from day one.
“She has a big heart for her students and provides many opportunities for them to be and feel successful,” he said. “Her desire to see her students succeed leads her to create learning experiences that are specific to the students’ needs and rich in content matter. She is often found after hours creating and researching content to enhance her instruction all while balancing her own children’s and family needs.”
Roberts lives with her husband and four children on a farm in Peetz. Before she joined the Peetz School staff she was working as a nurse, but tired of the constant short staffing and long hours and wanted to be closer to home, so she decided to go back to school to get her teaching degree. After providing an in-home daycare previously, she knew she wanted to do something different and teach the older students.
Durbin shared that Roberts has a true mind for her students and moving into the 2023-24 school year has revamped science program offerings to allow students more opportunities to pursue, including forensic science, microbiology, and more.
“She values increasing her students’ educational knowledge as much as her own and looks to gain her master’s degree to be able to offer (a biology) concurrent course so our students have the ability to be awarded college credit while still in high school,” Durbin said.
Roberts hopes in her role now that she is able to inspire some students to consider going into the nursing field because while she didn’t choose to remain there, it is a critical field, and more nurses are always needed.
“It is a good-paying job for when you’re younger,” she said.
For now, she is truly finding she loves her new job. The best part is the students and when many of them were gone for a recent track meet she found herself missing them.
“It’s boring without them,” Roberts said.
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