Terri Lee is a Special Education paraeducator and BTU Building Representative at Dickey Hill Elementary, where she has worked for 14 years. Prior to that, Ms. Lee worked at Forest Park High School, Western High School, City College High School, and Robert Coleman Elementary. Ms. Lee has been in the district for 34 years.
Please tell us a little about your job.
I started out as a paraprofessional, then I moved to being a paraeducator, and now I’m a Special Education paraeducator. I worked for about 2 years with the Distance Learning Program. I also have worked many years teaching art in the summertime. Art is a passion of mine. I worked mainly in the office for 20 years. When I became a paraeducator for Special Ed, I was working as a one-on-one with some of BCPSS’ special needs students. I really enjoy working with Special Ed.
How has this school year been going for you?
This school year has been quite challenging. The students are having difficulty getting acclimated with being in school and wearing masks and social distancing. Many of the younger students have never been in a school setting.
Tell us about your role as a Building Rep at your school.
I became a BR about 7 years ago at my current school and once before at another school. I became a BR to help the Paras at my school be appreciated and to stand up and fight for what is right. We work really hard and sometimes are not recognized for what we do. I try to keep them aware of what’s going on with our contract and any other things.
What other roles have you taken on in the union or at your school?
I have been in BCPSS for 34 years. In addition to being my school’s PSRP Building Rep for BTU, I’m a CoAdvisor for our Green Team, which has an awesome team. I’m the President of the Hospitality Committee, a member of the Outdoor Learning Classroom committee, and a member of the Family and Community Engagement Committee. I really enjoy arts and crafts. I have made many statues, photos, wall signs, and created multiple things around the school. I also created our school shirts. The theme of this issue is “Raising Youth Voices”.
What do you do to ensure that young people have a voice and are being heard?
I try to provide plenty of opportunities for our students to gain recognition for the many great things that they do. I work alongside some great teachers, and together, we provide the students with experiences that they may not normally have.