We had an inkling of what we might be getting when we considered hiring Kyra Atterbury for our Program Coordinator position.
About three years ago, as Assistant Director of Education at the National Liberty Museum, Kyra was a community partner for a NID class that had chosen bullying as their topic. We remember our program staff returning from a classroom visit, remarking how effectively Kyra and her colleague used a paper shredder as a tool to help the students work through issues with verbal aggression.
After leaving the National Liberty Museum, Kyra was the Social Emotional Instructor at Mastery Charter School, facilitating discussions with students about personal and academic skills, including topics such as decision making, relationships and college preparation.
We had another serendipitous insight into Kyra’s background. About ten years ago, her mom, Mary Atterbury, worked with us when she taught at the John Story Jenks School. Now retired, Mary had positive memories of her connection with NID (and vice versa). When Kyra told her about the opening, her mother encouraged her to apply.
Kyra felt “Being in the classroom was great, but I thought I could effect more change outside the classroom.” Perhaps the insights she’d gained might help teachers and students better understand each others’ perspectives. This led her to enroll at Chestnut Hill College, from which she will receive her M.S. in Child and Adolescent Therapy in 2010.
Certainly, Kyra’s familiarity with daily life for teachers complements her work with us. “I know how rewarding and also challenging it can be. We can affect teachers’ skills while also affecting the behavior and academic skills of their students.”