A warm welcome home for Ms. Reyes

The halls of Anderson Elementary School (AES) are familiar to Ms. Evelin Reyes, a senior at Anderson University (AU). While she is new as a student teacher this year, she got to know Anderson Elementary School years ago as a student.

“It is so surreal being back at Anderson Elementary School,” said Ms. Reyes. “The building still feels very new and well-maintained. And, there are teachers that I see in the hallways that I remember from when I was a student.”

Ms. Reyes’ parents moved to the United States from Mexico in 2001. Shortly thereafter, she was born in Anderson. A few short years later she began her educational journey at Anderson Elementary School. 

She remembers fondly the hands-on activities, her friends, and the incredible teachers at Anderson Elementary School. She also remembers how caring the staff and students were. Especially Ms. Payne.

“I remember Ms. Payne would pull groups out to do ENL,” added Ms. Reyes. “I enjoyed working with her so much that I was disappointed when she came to our classroom and I didn’t get to go with her.”

Now as a student teacher, working under Ms. Stephanie Salazar's guidance who is a 4th grade teacher at Anderson Elementary School, Ms. Reyes has had the opportunity to work with a variety of students. Among them are students who are in the ENL program she was once in.

“Ms. Reyes has had a positive impact on our students,” said Salazar. “She jumped right in on her first day here and helped with translating for students not even in our class. Ms. Reyes does a great job of managing the class and has given me some great new ideas.”

Family is very important to Ms. Reyes. Her parents have remained in Anderson and her younger sister is a sophomore at Anderson High School. 

She will graduate in May from Anderson University. When she does she will be the first person from her family to graduate from college.

While she is unsure of what her plans are after graduation, Ms. Reyes would love to continue working with elementary-aged students. And, should a spot open up, there are more than a few people at Anderson Elementary School who hope she is able to return as a full-time teacher next fall.

This article was written by Dayton Edwards, an intern with Anderson Community Schools.