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Individual stories

August 13, 2006

Katie Deuell



Katie Deuell, 24, of Martinsburg, W.Va., is a recent graduate of Shepherd University in Shepherdstown, W.Va. She majored in elementary education, and will teach first grade at Williamsport Elementary School.

This will be Deuell's first year teaching, and she said she has been busy setting up her classroom and getting ready for her students. She will have 20, she said.

"I love kids, and the feeling you be a bigger part of their whole picture," Deuell said. "You can make a noticeable difference in their lives."

For about one month, Deuell has been able to go into Williamsport Elementary, which she said has given her time to prepare. She has been busy gathering supplies and organizing so the classroom is ready for Aug. 23 - the first day of school.

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"I'm very much looking forward to it," Deuell said. "I'm very proud to be a team member in this county."




Jill Berry



Jill Berry, 30, of Williamsport, is beginning her ninth year as a teacher, but said this year is special because she is returning to the classroom after five years.

Berry, who will teach kindergarten at Hancock Elementary School, spent the past five years in Frederick County, Md., as a reading specialist in one of the elementary schools. She said she mainly worked with the language arts curriculum there.

Before working in Frederick County, Berry was a teacher in Stafford County, Va., and in Pennsylvania.

Berry said she decided to move from the Frederick County school system to Washington County because she has lived in Williamsport for several years, and wanted to be a part of the county's schools.

"It also lessened the commute," she said.

The most exciting part of the upcoming school year will be her return to the classroom, Berry said.

"I get to be with kids again," she said.




Ken Boheim



Ken Boheim, 67, of Hancock, worked for the U.S. Postal Service in Washington, D.C., for 28 years.

When he retired in 1992, Boheim said, he became bored and took a job as a librarian in a private school. He already had his mater's degree in library science. The school eventually needed a history teacher, and Boheim was selected for the position.

"Then, I found I had a strong desire to help young people succeed," he said.

When the school where Boheim was teaching closed, he didn't want to stop teaching, and enrolled at Mount St. Mary's University in Emmitsburg, Md., to earn a master's degree in teaching. He graduated in 2005.

Boheim then worked as a substitute teacher in Washington County Public Schools for one year before he was hired for a full-time position. He will teach English and world history to sixth-graders at Western Heights Middle School this year.

"It's just a dream come true," Boheim said. "I couldn't be happier to be a teacher."




Dave Pugh



Dave Pugh, 55, of Shepherdstown, W.Va., retired in June after 31 years of teaching in Jefferson County, W.Va.

He was hired in Washington County to teach social studies at South Hagerstown High School.

"I continue to teach because I love to teach," Pugh said.

Pugh said that with two sons in college, he was fortunate he could retire from one school system and work in another.

"I feel like I'm one of the luckiest people to get to continue doing what I love to do," he said.

Pugh said that even after more than 30 years of teaching, every year is different, and he looks forward to every one.

"In all of my years of teaching, no two have been the same," he said.

One thing that is the same each year is a quote that Pugh said he posts in his classroom by Thomas Jefferson: "If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, (in a state of civilization), it expects what never was and never will be."

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