Astronomy teacher recognized as Teacher of the Year


Fara Wiles

2023-2024 Teacher of the Year Michelle Bailey-Hennessey celebrates her accomplishment alongside the three other nominees: Claude Blanchard, Jordan Turner, and Sarah Burford on Monday, Oct. 24, 2022.

Astronomy teacher Michelle Bailey-Hennessey has been named the 2023-2024 Teacher of the Year, and a ceremony announcing her achievement was held on Oct. 24. 

Many teachers and students have recognized the accomplishments of Bailey-Hennessey; most notably in the connections she makes with her students.

“Her greatest strength is just the authentic relationships that she builds with students,” said Principal Dr. Claire LeBlanc. “She teaches from the heart. This is something that she does because she loves it. She’s been doing it for a very long time so she’s good at what she does she’s passionate about her subject, but she’s more passionate about the students that she teaches.”

Even as she was celebrating her achievement, Bailey-Hennessey also honored the other teachers who were nominated.

“I’m so honored to have gotten Teacher of the Year,” said Bailey-Hennessey. “Especially since I was up against some other absolutely amazing teachers.”

Other distinguished teachers included Claude Blanchard, Jordan Turner and Sarah Burford, who are also known for their connections with students. 

“All of them take advantage of opportunities to get to know their kids,” said LeBlanc. “That’s what I think they have in common. To me, it’s more about the relationships that they build with the students than it is anything else.”

The morning after the Teacher of the Year ceremony, Bailey-Hennessey came into school and thanked her students for motivating her to go above and beyond as an educator.

“You know, I really do everything for you guys. I appreciate each and every one of you. I drive here from North Carolina every day for you,” said Bailey-Hennessey.