Rebekah Kelemen

 Picture of Rebekah Kelemen

I graduated from the University of North Florida in April of 2011. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in Special Education-Exceptional Student Education, I applied for and was granted certification in Exceptional Student Education (K-12), Elementary Education (K-6), and English for Speakers of Other Languages (K-12). This is my second year teaching at John Love Elementary, an urban school on the eastside of Jacksonville. I am a varying exceptionalities teacher and work with students in the inclusive setting. As the only ESE teacher at my school, I get to interact with students at each grade level. This year, I was honored by my peers and administration by being chosen as the Teacher of the Year for John Love Elementary. In addition, I serve as the corresponding secretary for the Duval County Reading Council.

My undergraduate work at UNF was essential to entering the teaching profession ready to make a positive impact on students’ lives. Using one of the resources that I received during my undergraduate work, I have been able to give two second grade students strategies to read who were unable to decode CVC words at the beginning of year. The fieldwork and internship experiences I completed while studying at UNF were very similar to what I do now as a VE teacher; my role as an inclusion teacher immediately felt natural due to my undergraduate preparation. The coursework I completed prepared me to be a leader among my colleagues, especially in the areas of collecting documentation and implementing appropriate interventions.

As a member of my school’s leadership, response to intervention/multi-tiered systems of support (RtI/MTSS), foundations, and technology teams, I am able to use the knowledge and skills acquired in my undergraduate work to positively affect the entire student body at my school. I believe the keys to success are planning, staying organized, and maintaining professionalism.