Whitman teacher recognized by publication
Whitman Middle School Special Education teacher Deanna Youngren will be listed in the Who's Who Among America's Teachers publication after being nominated by a former student.
The tenth edition of the book will be released later this year. She does not know which of her past students submitted her name in for the book, but the Who's Who Among America's Teachers organization accepts nominations from young people who themselves have been listed in one of three publications.
Teachers who are considered have made a difference in student lives by shaping their values, inspiring them in a subject and challenging them to strive for excellence.
Youngren majored in Political Science and History at Vanguard University in South California. She took a teaching education program at the University of Riverside after she decided to be a teacher.
In 1995, she moved to the Seattle area and became a substitute teacher in the Lake Washington School District. "I ended up substituting for a lot of special education teachers with kids with learning disabilities," Youngren said.
Most of the kids in her classes have mild to moderate disabilities. They have been diagnosed with reading and writing problems.
"I really like working with kids that have struggled. It's a mix of counseling, advocacy and being a mother hen. It gives me more time to work with kids. It takes them longer to get things. Success is broken into small chunks," said Youngren.
The students also take regular classes and Youngren helps them develop skills in context with what they are learning.
Education runs in Youngren's family. Her mother Delvana Youngren teaches computers and oversees the yearbook projects at Mt. View Middle School in Beaumount, CA.
Former students often come back to Whitman to visit their old teachers. "Teachers here have kids constantly coming back. They always track you down and want to tell you what's going on with their lives," said Youngren.
"It's a validation when they come back to say hi," said Youngren.
"There are thousands and thousands of hard working teachers and school staff everyday that really matter to kids. People are caring and dedicated. They are dedicated to children. They know working with kids is a solid investment," said Youngren.