PORTSIDE

A Bittersweet Departure for English Teacher of 25 Years

“I have really enjoyed working with Bay Port students these 22 years, and the biggest change for me will be working in an environment populated more with adults than with kids on a daily basis.”


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Ms. Bailey reads to students
She explains the complex themes in The Chosen
Photo by Dedriana Perry

Creating lessons that go beyond the confines of literature is not a struggle for ELA teacher, Janelle Bailey, of 25 years. During the course of her time, she has taught and influenced students to know they have the ability to become successful at achieving their dreams, but now she is able to achieve a dream of her’s. She will become the State Director of Wisconsin Academic Decathlon (WIAD)- CESA 7, located in Ashwaubenon.

As Bay Port’s Academic Decathlon coach for 17 years, she has gotten to know the WIAD staff and volunteers very well, through taking teams to state the past several years and being on the WIAD Board of Directors the past two years. For 29 years the program ran from Madison, but has unexpectedly moved to Ashwaubenon, much to her surprise. “For a long time this position looked like a dream job to me…but I had no way of knowing that the program would ever move right to Green Bay for me.” The combination of her resignation and the program moving to CESA 7 allowed this all to happen.

Although this has been a longtime dream of Bailey, she is beginning to the find the transition bittersweet, yet excited for the obstacles ahead. “I have really enjoyed working with Bay Port students these 22 years, and the biggest change for me will be working in an environment populated more with adults than with kids on a daily basis.” When asked “What will you miss the most,” she confidently responded with, “I’ll miss having an influence on and building connections with young people daily.”

It’s always been clear to Ms. Bailey that hellos are a whole lot more fun than goodbyes. She’s always welcomed students to her room wholeheartedly, gotten to know them, and encouraged them to continue to stay in touch with her after that class, that semester, the next year, or high school…so she prefers “see you later”s to “goodbyes.”

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