Lake View High School
San Angelo Independent School District
San Angelo, TX, USA
Field: Algebra and Precalculus Education
As a mathematics teacher at Lake View High School, Saundra Paschal spends her career working with America’s youth to develop their skill with numbers. As a specialist in algebra and pre-calculus, she develops comprehensive lesson plans designed to prepare students for standardized testing and provide them with mathematical skills that see use on a daily basis outside of the classroom. Too often, students are disillusioned with the role that mathematics plays in the world around us. As a result, these students tend to gravitate away from studying the field when given the choice of electives. Ms. Paschal believes this has led to an overall lessening of mathematics skills among high school and college students compared to years past. “Part of the challenge of being an educator in modern times is working to correct this problem and get students back on track,” she says.
The most satisfying aspect of Ms. Paschal’s career is seeing that students truly understand the concepts that she puts forth. This is common to many teachers, who feel a deep sense of gratification at seeing their students succeed. What sets her apart is her great passion for her work, as well as her exemplary work ethic. Such is her commitment that she was able to fulfill her calling even during one of the most difficult periods of her life. Following the deaths of both her parents within a period of one year, Ms. Paschal was asked by one of her former students to teach a calculus class. Rising above her personal grief, Ms. Paschal was able to pull through for her students and teach the class, showing remarkable resilience in the face of tragedy.
When asked about what advice she would pass on to future educators, Ms. Paschal recommends the following: “Be patient with yourself, students and administration. Be flexible and accept constructive criticism.” Though it may be tedious at times to deal with red tape and regulations, Ms. Paschal believes that the struggle is worth it to see her students gain valuable skills and achieve success. Continue reading