The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

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School Columnists

October 17, 2013

New faces seen around Geneva Eagles territory

GENEVA — This year Geneva High School welcomes five new teachers, each of whom brings a unique background and personality to the classrooms. The teachers – Michelle Rawlins, Marie Skidmore, Douglas Barber, Jeff Hull and James Berei – are all excited to be teaching at Geneva.

Michelle Rawlins teaches English 12 and College Prep English 11. She comes to GHS from Lakeside High School, where she was an intervention specialist tutor. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Notre Dame College. Mrs. Rawlins said she chose to come to Geneva because she feels that it is one of the best schools in the area and that her strong work ethic and high standards are a good fit here. She enjoys the welcoming atmosphere and the support system that she has found teaching in Geneva, she said.

When asked why she became a teacher, Mrs. Rawlins said, “I wanted to show (the students) that learning the material can be fun and interesting. Students today need to know there is a reason we need to be able to read and write, learn about the history of our language, and also learn about those writers who were important in shaping our country.”

Marie Skidmore, the first and second level Spanish teacher, brings a wealth of knowledge and experience with her. She studied at Mercyhurst University in Erie, Pa., and has earned her dual bachelor of arts in elementary education and world languages and cultures (Spanish) education and a master of science degree in bilingual bicultural special education. In 2012 she was appointed by the Spanish Embassy to teach English in Badajoz, Spain, but economic issues in the area closed the program for that school year. Ms. Skidmore previously taught at St. Gregory’s Parish in North East, Pa., and at St. John School in Ashtabula for two years each.

“This is my first year teaching in a public school and I am enjoying the many opportunities (extracurricular and academic) offered to students and teachers,” said Ms. Skidmore.

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