Stephani Ardoin
Southwest Schools

For me, mentorship is the personal rapport that is established between two individuals who both can learn from each other. It is the guidance and support that is provided to the mentee, but also the reflection; establishing the why.

This year I’ve grown in many aspects of remembering my love and passion for my craft, while developing a novice teacher to create and find their passion for the profession. Mentoring has direct impact on students whether it is the learning environment, instructional best practices and/or social emotional learning. What a mentee learns and displays to their students, reflects proper mentorship. Mentors have impacted my life significantly whether it was in decision making or facing new challenges. They taught me to be reflective and to always look at the glass as half full. As a mentor, I hope to accomplish impacting my mentees to become a change agent with a desire to educate the whole child and to never stop growing and learning within their craft. My hope lies in supporting the development of teachers and leaders whose practice is grounded by an agency to drive change in urban schools. Discouraging days will come and I believe it is important that you sit with and validate your feelings but don’t remain there. I am a strong believer in reflection, revisiting and resetting when needed. Reflecting over the things that went well AND the things that can be improved. I am also adept at revising my own game plan and resetting my thought processes. This helps me both personally and professionally to continue shining despite the challenges that may come. Relationships are the foundation of being able to connect to people. I believe my ability to connect with people comes from being able to listen and empathize with a person. As individuals we are our worst critics and often, we only focus on the negative or the problem and we often don’t look at the whole picture or person. In the world we live in, it is important to extend grace and provide support when needed.

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