It is hard not to notice Jeanice Reed, a new math instructor at Washington & Lee High School. First, she has a megawatt smile that is always there. Then there is that self-possessed attitude that she seems to have been born with. Lastly, Jeanice has confidence in what she is doing. When you combine all these attributes, you find a delightfully skilled, ecstatic young lady, who just loves to teach Algebra, Algebra I, AFDA, and Pre-Calculus. “I am thrilled to be back in W&L and to call my previous teachers co-workers.”
A graduate of Virginia Wesleyan University, Jeanice majored in mathematics. She has always loved the concepts and intricacies of numbers and the study of mathematics. Her favorite subjects in school were everything “but English.” Jeanice knows that math is not necessarily everyone’s favorite class. “I hope to change the attitude kids have toward math and bring new opportunities and experiences to the students.” After spending her first year teaching at Lancaster High School, she returned home to Westmoreland County Public Schools this year.
Jeanice has found just a couple of challenges to being a young teacher. “Working with children that are either related to me or know me in some personal way has been somewhat challenging. Also, letting kids I know learn that I was a figure of authority and not their friend. I don’t have those problems anymore. And, yes, I have been stopped in the hall for my cell phone, especially on Fridays, when we can wear jeans.”
When asked what advice she would have given her 8th grade self, Jeanice quickly responded, “It would be okay not to be perfect, love yourself more, stop being a smartie, and study more!” She always thought about being a teacher. “I taught Vacation Bible School at my church and was always given a platform to help educate others in my church. I also received a Future Teacher’s Scholarship from the Westmoreland County Public Schools Education Foundation.” That seemed to have paved the way for her educational goals. “My favorite teachers at W&L were Wes James and Kelly Wright. I also thank Mrs. Payne for inspiring me.”
Jeanice’s immediate goal is to have “a 100 percent pass rate and inspire children to have a positive outlook on mathematics.” She described her first day of teaching at W&L as “amazing and I would dare call it perfect. My family has been very supportive of my decision and hope that their children will pass though my classroom at some point.”
Washington & Lee High School is a brighter place with teachers like Jeanice Reed in place. As she noted, “I feel a deep connection to the people in this area and felt welcomed and valued as a team member both in and out of the classroom.” Welcome home, Ms. Reed. You are indeed a valued member of the Westmoreland County Public School family.