The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) announced Oct. 26 that 22 teachers from across the Commonwealth have been selected as ambassadors for 2022.
The mission of GoTeachKY, a KDE initiative, is to ensure that all students across the Commonwealth have equitable access to effective educators. GoTeachKY seeks to recruit the next generation of teachers in Kentucky, helping remedy the critical teacher shortage that affects every state in the U.S.
Ambassadors were selected from a pool of applicants across the state who answered the call for teachers interested in supporting the initiative and helping promote the teaching profession. They have three goals:
- Communicate with and inspire students in high school and college to consider teaching as a career;
- Communicate with potential and current teachers to positively capture the rewards and opportunities associated with a career in teaching; and
- Support and promote the central focus areas, programs and organizations of GoTeachKY, such as Educators Rising and the Teaching and Learning career pathway.
The 2022 GoTeachKY ambassadors are:
- Kennita L Ballard, Jefferson County, Grace James Academy, (English language arts)
- Brittany Barnett, McCreary County, Pine Knot Elementary, (moderate/severed disabilities K-5)
- Kassity Boor, Todd County, Todd County Middle School, (science)
- Donna Corn Davis, Paris Independent, Paris Middle School, (special education English language arts)
- Heather Dunn, Kenton County, Twenhofel Middle School, (social studies)
- Jennifer Eerenberg, Boyd County, Catlettsburg Elementary, (math intervention)
- Melissa Felice, Shelby County, Martha Layne Collins, (Teaching and Learning Pathway, Spanish II)
- Laura Ferguson, Lyon County, Lyon County Middle School, (reading and English)
- C.J. Fryer, Beechwood Independent Schools, Beechwood High School, (mathematics)
- Kristin Gerton, Scott County, Georgetown Middle School, (careers – career and technical education)
- Wesley Rogers Hatfield, Elizabethtown Independent School District, Morningside Elementary School, (3rd grade)
- Christine Holajter, Scott County, Georgetown Middle School, (art, choir and drama)
- Samantha Hoops, Owensboro Public Schools, Owensboro High School, (mathematics)
- Katelin King, Monroe County, (district digital learning coach)
- Kristin J. Lester, Harlan County, Black Mountain Elementary, (library media)
- Shelby Kristine Loyd, Erlanger-Elsmere Independent Schools, Lloyd Memorial High School, (special education)
- Laura Beth Pennington, Franklin County, Elkhorn Middle School, (mathematics)
- Amanda Ratliff, Johnson County, Johnson Central High School, (chemistry, Response to Intervention)
- Brandi Slone, Floyd County, Duff-Allen Central Elementary, (core content)
- Kimberly Snodgrass, Fayette County, Paul Laurence Dunbar High School, (social studies)
- Jamaal L. Stiles, Washington County, Washington County High School, (biology, medical science and forensics)
- Cory Dylan White, Bowling Green Independent Schools, W. R. McNeill Elementary School, (kindergarten)
Ambassadors must hold or have held a teaching position in a Kentucky public school and have at least four years of experience as a teacher, principal or other certified school staff member.
Each ambassador has a unique story that brought them into the teaching profession and their stories will be featured on social media as examples of the different pathways available to future educators.
Ambassadors also will represent GoTeachKY at career fairs and other speaking engagements.