LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Stephanie Killingsworth

Position: Science Teacher
School: Conniston Middle School
School District: Palm Beach County School District
City, State: West Palm Beach, FL

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Stephanie Killingsworth was nominated by member of the community, Amanda Sorrell.

Ms. Killingsworth graduated college as a scientist and worked in the operating rooms assisting doctors with new orthopedic devices. She wanted to start a family, so she ended up adopting three children from Columbia; calling it her "Instant Family." This led her to teaching, wanting her kids and other kids to have real life experiences. Ms. Killingsworth has only been teaching for four years, but her story is truly amazing.

Ms. Killingsworth has been able to get middle schoolers beyond the walls of the classroom, piquing their interests in STEM careers. Her students have been exposed to college laboratories and many other types of field work. She constantly has special guest speakers in the classroom to teach the children about different careers, such as Dr. Mcfadden from UF, orthopedic surgeons, and hydrogeologists. She hosts "Meet the Scientist" night at school every week, and has been able to arrange Skype sessions with scientists from all over the world. 

Ms. Killingsworth has been able to take the students shark tagging, taking fin clippings and learning different diet changes. She even arranged a day to clean up the beaches with her students. On one specific trip, 100 students helped clean up 250,000 lbs of plastic on the coast of Florida.

One year, she wanted to focus on the country of India and their clean water supply challenges. This project started with the students learning about how human life impacts the world, and morphed into a bigger service learning piece. They were able to fund raise $10,000 for the "Water for People Non-Profit" for India. They focused on this country because of the intense population, water cleanliness, water scarcity and instructor issues. They worked with hydrogeologists in India and were able to help create solutions for a remote village in west Bengal.

Ms. Killingsworth was able to get the first school board approved and school backed international field trip for Palm Beach County. Both current and former students were then able to travel to India. To help finance the field trip, she had her students create different products to sell. They designed t-shirts, sold sugar scrubs, soaps, poinsettia, jewelry, and ornaments throughout the year. Each kid received $1000 for travel expenses. This experience led them into their next trips all over the world.

In 2018-2019, she has a group of students going to Madrid, Spain in March. The students are learning about the bubonic plague - how it effected language, arts and architecture, and how it was transmitted. In June, another group of students are going to the Galapagos Islands, where they will learn about Earth History, Plate tectonics, and Charles Darwin. In 2019, she has a group of students going to the Grand Canyon to learn about geology and land sediments. Another group is going to Peru and Iceland to study plate tectonics.

"She leads the children in helping them believe they have the power and ability to do anything," Sorrell said. "The list of things she has been able to get these kids experiences in is truly overwhelming! She is truly an inspiring teacher."

Comments (24)

Michelle Neal Posted over a year ago

Stephanie is a colleague that is a professional and whom I greatly admire. She cares not only for her students and families but her fellow teachers and administrators.

Karen Patureau Posted over a year ago

Ms. Killingsworth has an extraordinary passion for teaching. She continually creates innovative ways to encourage her students to aspire to greatness. She is an asset to our school as a result of her exemplary leadership. She makes newcomers feel welcome, and has an outstanding rapport with her students. Ms. Killingsworth possesses a positive attitude in any setting. Students and faculty members seek her guidance and advice with no reservations. At Conniston, we believe Stephanie is already a successful, dedicated LIFECHANGER!

Angela Posted over a year ago

Stephanie is fantastic to work with! I only wish I had a teacher to provide such amazing experiences when I was in middle school.

Ron Blevins Posted over a year ago

Great mentor

Nichole Edmonds Posted over a year ago

Stephanie is not your average teacher. She goes above and beyond the classroom to making learning fun & exciting. She will be a teacher that makes an impact on the kids she teaches and they will always remember her as a great teacher!!

Sarah Ludden Posted over a year ago

I'm voting for Stephanie Killingsworth!

Molly Shaw Posted over a year ago

Stephanie and I worked together in Panama in the summer of 2016, collecting fossils for a UF paleontology project. I am glad she has been nominated for this well-deserved award. Her devotion to kids and learning is deeply inspiring.

Maite Tatum Posted over a year ago

She is truly AMAZING!!

Lisa Copeland Posted over a year ago

She is truly an inspirational teacher, friend, mother and wife.

Stella Wormus Posted over a year ago

No one deserves this more!

Christine Williams Posted over a year ago

Stephanie deserves to win 100 times over!

Steve Dougherty Posted over a year ago

Ms. Killingsworth is amazing

KEVIN Posted over a year ago

Stephanie is an amazing person. She is a wife, mom and a teacher. Each she excels at. She always thinks of others and wants to educate the children who are our future. She is very giving and deserving of this nomination. Good luck Stephanie

Brandy Lopez Posted over a year ago

Amazing teacher and person!!!

Sarah Ludden Posted over a year ago

I'm voting for Stephanie Killingsworth!

Tammy Hopkins Posted over a year ago

I vote for Mrs. Killingsworth!

Christie Malchow Posted over a year ago

Stephanie is truly a life changer!

T Henderson Posted over a year ago

Voting for Mrs Stephanie Killingsworth

Melissa Hudson Posted over a year ago

Honored to know you!! You are absolutely remarkable!

Maureen witkowski Posted over a year ago

My vote is for Stephanie Killingsworth

Sonia Birch Posted over a year ago


Brooke Affholder Posted over a year ago

This woman is all the above and more. We were blessed for my daughter to have her as a true LIFE CHANGER and teacher. She has instilled a love of science and nature in my daughter that will pave her way for her love of science for life. She didn't just teach, she did. All the hands on experiences and trips. She will stand out in our lives as one of the most inspirational people we have ever met.

Rebecca Currie Posted over a year ago

Stephanie is truly the best!!

Jennifer Briceno Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Killingsworth is an exemplary teacher and an exceptional individual. Her expertise and her passion for learning are just some of the reasons she is so inspiring. My daughter was very fortunate to have Mrs. K. as her 7th and 8th grade science teacher and was even able to travel to India with her group/classmates in June 2017. Words can’t describe the multitude of ways that Mrs. Killingsworth helps her students both inside and outside the classroom.