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Staff Highlight of the Issue

Abby Schutte patiently connects with students

Early in the morning, students walking by room 257 can hear math teacher and senior class co-sponsor, Abby Schutte’s loud and enthusiastic greetings to coworkers, and most importantly to her students. The biggest part of Schutte’s morning is being there for her students. Prior to arriving at school, Schutte has already gone on her daily 5 a.m. run, helped her daughters get ready for school, and prepared her classroom for the day’s teaching.

Having taught Geometry, Algebra I and II, Discrete Math, and Probability and Statistics classes, Schutte left Potomac Falls High School in 2013. She came to work at County to continue teaching.

Throughout her many years of teaching, Schutte has shown good teaching skills and has gained popularity amongst her students.

“My favorite thing about Mrs. Schutte is how good of a teacher she is,” sophomore Kalie Brown said. “She is caring, thoughtful, and patient.”

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The light for Schutte’s teaching career was lit when she was a child. She always knew she wanted to be a teacher, and many of her own teachers motivated Schutte to continue along her path to becoming one.

“I was the child that would come home, first day of winter break, and be like, ‘Let’s play school,’” Schutte said. She would make up fake math worksheets, spelling tests, and even had a make-believe roster.

As she entered the teaching field, Schutte’s dream fueled her to become the person she is today.

“I loved the relationships that you can form with older kids,” Schutte said, “not that you can’t with younger kids, it’s just at a different and deeper level with high schoolers.”

From being a new teacher and learning to adapt to functioning a classroom, to now having taught a numerous number of kids, Schutte has evolved as both a teacher and a person.

“I have learned that teaching by the textbook is not my style,” Schutte said.

With years of teaching to guide her, Schutte uses her everyday experiences to help her modify her notes and classroom activities to fit her ever changing teaching style.

Helping her with these modifications and upgrades is special education teacher Elaine Voketaitis, who has been working with Schutte for eight years.

“After each class, we discuss what went well and what we need to improve on,” Voketaitis said. “Then, we implement those improvements.”

Schutte continues to refine her classroom routines and techniques, constantly thinking about how something could’ve gone better, or how she can make learning more fun for her students.

Her excellence in teaching led her to win Teacher of the Month in September. Each month, students vote on the most influential teacher to receive this award. The Teacher of the Month award is given to recognize a teacher’s hard work and good work ethics.

“I was excited to win,” Schutte said. “I don’t do what I do to get awards, but it’s nice to know that I’m making a difference.”

Math teacher Abby Schutte smiles for the camera, trophy in hand, holding her Teacher of the Month award. The award is voted upon by students to be given to teachers that show excellence in teaching and contribute to making our school a better place. Schutte won Teacher of the Month this past September. (Madison Ruff)

Other students, like sophomore Silvia Keyes, appreciate Schutte’s willingness to help her students, and see her deserving of this award.

“She is kind, understanding, and genuine,” Keyes said. “Her main hope is to help her students learn, no matter what, and you can tell by her attitude.”

As students continue to learn and grow and the school year progresses, Schutte continues to be an inspiration for many.

“I was in her class last year, and she still says hi to me and asks me how I’m doing,” Keyes said. “She is like a role model to me because she genuinely cares about her students and I would still go to her whenever I had a problem.”

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About the Contributor
Karan Singh, business manager
Karan Singh is a sophomore at Loudoun County High School. This is his first year working for The County Chronicle. Karan likes writing investigative reports and articles that expose secrets. Outside of school, Karan likes listening to music, reading, writing, hanging out with friends, and talking.

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