August 9, 2013
For students in Albemarle Co. school starts in a couple of weeks, but teachers have to come in early to get a head start on the school year.
For the newest hires that means a teaching academy and all across the county new teachers are learning a little bit more about the schools they will soon be working in.
Over at Walton Middle School (WMS) five teachers have been added to the list.
"I'm very careful about my hires, and therefore I'm thrilled when they come in because I have spent enough time with them to know they're going to make a huge difference with the children,” says Alison Dwier-Seldon, principal at Walton.
One of the new hires is Brandon Isaiah. He taught for three years at Walker Elementary in Charlottesville and is now joining WMS's staff as a special education teacher.
"I’m looking forward to getting back to the classroom,” says Isaiah. “I've been lying around all summer and watching TV now it's about that time when you know you need to do something meaningful."
But teaching wasn't Isaiah's first career choice. He used to play football for UVa. and dreamed of making it to the NFL.
"I was young, hardheaded, still thinking I was gonna play football for the rest of my life, and put it on the back burner, kind of fought it for a few years,” explained Isaiah. “About four years later I kind of got hip to the fact that I wanted to work with kids."
He also coaches football for Monticello High School and believes his coaching skills will help him in the classroom.
"There's a mental aspect to football, you have to learn plays, watch film and know what the other opponent is doing, so we bring those same thoughts to the classroom as well,” says Isaiah. “You have to study and be able to work under pressure."
But overall Isaiah just wants to make sure his students have every opportunity to succeed
"I think all the time, what I can do to help them become better in the future."
And with the help of the academy he hopes to get a few pointers in the process.
Next week the rest of the teachers at WMS will come in for the larger orientation, but for now these new hires are learning a little bit more about their new home.
Albemarle Co. schools start back up on August 21st.