Carla McCoy has been teaching in Baltimore City Public Schools for 29 years. She has spent 23 of those years at Edmondson-Westside High School in west Baltimore. A native of Philadelphia, Carla graded from Millersville University of Pennsylvania with a degree in English and Secondary Education. She decided to come to Baltimore because they were the first school system to offer her a job. “I started looking for a job after college and Baltimore called me first,” McCoy said.
Carla prefers to teach high school over the other grades because she says she enjoys the children and the course work more. “The kids are more mature,” McCoy said. “I like the culture of high school, you have the prom, graduation and the coursework is more of what I like.”
She has seen a lot of changes in education in Baltimore over the years as the powers that be are always trying to find ways to make it right, which means everything keeps changing and it’s hard to keep up. She says while sometimes things do need to change, sometimes in those changes people lose sight of what does work and some of the old policies that worked get left behind.
“Teaching is a human field and we need to treat it like that,” Carla says. “But there are so many restrictions out there and sometimes our students need more.”
Sometimes those restrictions get in the way of teaching and that is why Carla is a union member. She has been a member of the BTU for her entire career. “I can’t imagine working in an environment that is not unionized,” Carla said. “I have friends that work in other areas and they have no voice because they have no union.”
Carla has been union her whole life. She said her parents were union members, so it was only natural that she became a part of the union. “I have learned a lot from the union, equity, professionalism and diversity are just a few,” Carla said.
In addition to her teaching duties, Carla is a Building Representative for the BTU, she holds positions on the graduation committee, the hospitality committee and she is a mentor. She is also the facilitator for the Teacher Leader Program run through the BTU and AFT.