For St. Martin’s-in-the-Field Episcopal School (SMES) learning support coordinator Kelcey Wohlgemuth, her role translates to all things special education.
However, that’s just the beginning of her contributions.
She not only teaches academic support classes to first grade through eighth, but she also collaborates with division coordinators, teachers, students and their families to determine the best learning strategies, methods and avenues for students.
“My teaching philosophy is deeply student-centered and grounded in the concept of unconditional positive regard,” Wohlgemuth said. “I acknowledge and celebrate the diverse strengths and abilities each student brings to the learning space.”
Wohlgemuth strives to create an environment where there’s teacher-student respect and value. For instance, building on student strengths, providing support where needed and fostering an open dialogue that encourages expression, advocacy and discovery. The educator has found that this formula lays a solid foundation for students to feel empowered and, ultimately, thrive in their educational journey.
Wohlgemuth earned her undergraduate degree in fine arts from Salisbury University.
“I had hopes of becoming an art teacher, but my first teaching experience was at a special education school, and I absolutely fell in love,” she said.
From there, she went to Goucher College to earn her master's degree in the “art of teaching” with a concentration in special education. Wohlgemuth began teaching at SMES in September 2021. Prior to that, she was a stay-at-home mom for three years to her two sons, now ages 5 and 7. Before her time at home, she was the associate director of the High Road School, a special education facility in Lanham, Maryland.
Owen Abbey, middle school social studies teacher at SMES, noted that all of Wohlgemuth’s efforts for the school cannot be overstated. In his opinion, she’s the hardest-working teacher at their school.
“I have learned so much from her as an educator and have implemented many strategies she suggests that have worked wonders,” Abbey said.
Wohlgemuth works with eighth-graders to get them into the high school of their choice, tutors students outside of school, and is on the lower school and middle school admissions committees.
“Simply put, she is one of the busiest people I have ever met,” Abbey said.
Her commitments even stretch outside the classroom.
At St. Martin’s, Wohlgemuth has coached fifth through eighth grade girls’ lacrosse. Wohlgemuth has loved having the opportunity to connect with the girls in a more relaxed environment because it “allows us to see each other in a different light and helps deepen our connection on the field and in school,” she said.
Abbey isn’t the only one who sings Wohlgemuth’s praises.
“Every staff member has positive things to say about her, and every kid she works with enjoys her positive attitude and her desire to see them improve,” said Abbey, who also noted how parents love Wohlgemuth because of her consistent effort with their children.
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