Enid High School teacher Ashley Epps has been involved in education since 2011.
Epps currently teaches Special Education English and also runs the Word Study program.
She knew it was the career for her after her first year.
“I began my career in education in August 2011 when I was hired as a Paraprofessional. I knew after my first year as a para that this is the career field that I wanted to be in,” Epps said. “In August of 2014, I went back to school to become a certified teacher through the para-to-teacher program, and began my first year as a certified special education teacher in August 2016.
“For me, I loved the connections that I made with my students! Yes, I got really excited when they mastered different concepts that were being taught and had that “light bulb” moment, but connecting with them and building a trusting relationship with them was HUGE for me!
Epps has been at Enid during her entire education career. The family atmosphere surrounding Enid has kept her put in place.
“The thing that I love most about Enid High is that we are a family! I always knew that EHS was a great school, and had the best faculty and staff, but in 2018 when my family was rocked with the news that my daughter had cancer, I was able to fully see just how amazing our school is,” she said.
“These people became my family and for that I will forever be grateful! Our faculty and staff are some of the most caring and compassionate people. When it comes to the administration team, we are definitely blessed with the best.”
Enid’s Work Study program is being reconditioned, and Epps likes where things are going.
“Our school and special education department has started to work on revamping our Work Study program and creating a transition program for our students who may not be college ready and who will go straight into the workforce,” Epps said. “We are wanting to give these students all of the skills that they will need to leave high school to gain employment within the community. We are looking at creating a student store, having our students create different products to sell in the store, internship opportunities within the school and community and so many new exciting things!”
Epps prioritizes in teaching students to speak out.
“I think one of the most important skills that I try to teach my students is to self-advocate for themselves. They need to be able to speak up, communicate their needs, and advocate for themselves,” she said.
Epps enjoys spending time with family and spending time with those she’s established lifelong friendships with at school.
“When I am not at work, I love spending time with my family and friends. My family loves to travel, watch sports, and just spend quality time together,” she said.
“I have made some lifelong friends while working at EHS and we love to get together and have our weekly girls dinner. We go on trips sometimes a few times a year and have the BEST times.”