LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Kerry Foote

Position: Instructional Coach
School: Union Township Elementary School
School District: Union Township Schools
City, State: Hampton, NJ

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Kerry Foote was nominated by her former colleague, Lindsay Frevert.

Ms. Foote has been a LifeChanger every year that she has been an educator. Her passion and love for her students and colleagues is evident and contagious. Everyone wants to be better educators because of the drive and effort she brings each and every day.

Ms. Foote is an innovative leader because she finds new ways of teaching, and is constantly creating a classroom environment that is welcoming to every student.

"When you walk into Kerry’s room, you feel such a positive energy," Frevert said. "Her students have the opportunity to have a variety of ways to sit and learn. There are pillows, laundry baskets, desk pedals, saucer seats, etc. for students to utilize while they work." 

Flexible seating is a big part of Ms. Foote's classroom, and students determine how they work best and decide how they will sit or even stand. This allows students to have their own learning independence. 

Ms. Foote has students learning in several different ways. They are on computers, in small groups, writing in sand, using QR codes, or videoing themselves on iPads practicing fluency. During different holidays, students are seen using Frankenstein fingers while reading, or special holiday glasses while editing. Students have also dressed up in a doctor’s outfit when dissecting words. Her creativity is truly incredible, and the students love it.

Last year, Ms. Foote had a special event in her room when she opened up her library. The students were so excited to be able to go book shopping, and the principal, school librarian, and school mascot came. This little event was very special to her students. Students have a variety of different needs when they enter Ms. Foote's room, and she does all that she can to ensure their needs are met.

Ms. Foote is not only a leader in the classroom, but within the district as well. In her former district, Somerville Public Schools, she was a member of many committees. She helped run the Winter Literacy Night, as well as the Read Across America Event. These events ran flawlessly because Ms. Foote has put the time in beforehand to set everything up. Whenever she runs an event, it is run perfectly because of her commitment.

Ms. Foote was also on the SunFISH Committee at Somerville Public Schools, which does various activities for the staff. She is always willing to assist with making cupcakes or bringing in treats for the staff. She is of great assistance during the staff Holiday Party, always bringing fun games to the table. Ms. Foote has also shared her expertise by presenting various Professional Development workshops for the teachers of her district.

Ms. Foote is always willing to do whatever needs to be done. If there are flyers that need to be typed up, she is willing to do it. If stamina charts or reading logs need to be done, she is there to do them. The curriculum has been revised, and Ms. Foote has been assisting where she can. She has provided activities and centers to assist teachers with the implementation of the curriculum.Ms. Foote is phenomenal with making center activities, and is always willing to make centers for any grade that asks. Whatever she makes, she shares.

Ms. Foote is a natural teacher. She is a role model, not only to her students, but the staff as well. Ms. Foote is always trying to find ways to remind her students and her colleagues how awesome they are. She always has Halloween costumes for students just in case they may not have one. One way that she has shown her commitment to her students was with what she did a few years ago, when one of her students was diagnosed with ALD. She was the one who met with the parents to voice the concerns she saw within the classroom. Because of her communication with the parents, they were able to find out what was wrong. Her student was sent to Minnesota for a bone marrow transplant. She and Frevert knew exactly what they needed to do—visit him there. It was the greatest experience, not only for her student, but for his parents as well. After Ms. Foote's student came back, they also tutored him at home and have become permanent members of their family. Ms. Foote continues to stay in contact with her students after they have left her room. She wants them to know that she is always there to support them.

 "There is no one that is more deserving of this award," Frevert said. "I am lucky to not only have Kerry as a colleague but as a friend as well. This is truly an award made for Kerry."

Kerry Foote In The News:
Somerville Teacher Nominated for National Life Changer Award

Comments (2)

Anonymous Posted over a year ago

I have the honor and privilege to work with Kerry on a daily basis in our school district. Not only is she one of the most dedicated, passionate educators I have ever met in my entire teaching career, but she is one of the most kind and thoughtful as well. She is ALWAYS willing to put others before herself. She constantly volunteers for committees and projects that benefit both staff and students and gives the attention and detail to each that make it seem as though she doesn't have a million other things on her plate (which she does, and juggles them all with such ease and professionalism). Her positivity towards education and life in general makes others aspire to be more like her. I feel so fortunate to have Kerry as a colleague and truly feel she is the most deserving candidate of the Life Changer Award.

Katie Seitz Posted over a year ago

I am so fortunate to call Kerry an amazing colleague, mentor, and friend. Kerry is the epitome of a life changer. Kerry is dedicated to helping everyone in her school community. Kerry is innovative, creative, and has a passion for learning. Kerry truly is a lifelong learner. Her positive attitude and work ethic is contagious. UTES is so lucky to have such an incredible teacher, colleague, instructional coach, and friend!