White looking forward to new role at BES
Speech and Language Pathologist Kim White is looking forward to her new role as the lead preschool teacher for the new preschool classroom at Brewton Elementary School. “After 24 years of teaching in the area Speech-Language Pathology, I am excited to embark on my new journey as the lead preschool teacher for our newest preschool classroom, which we were awarded for the 2020-2021 school year,” said White. The nationally-recognized, high quality Alabama First Class Pre-K program was a new addition to the school system last year. This year, through an increase in funds, the school system is adding 18 students to the program.
When looking back on the last few months and the decision to transition, she added, “It is like it is meant to be.”
White, originally from Brewton, is a 1991 graduate of W.S. Neal High School. After high school, White attended Jefferson Davis Community College and earned an associate of arts degree. It was here that White was first introduced to the field. “I knew I always wanted to be a teacher, but as I got older I knew that it wasn’t the classroom that I wanted to be in, but I wanted to do something specialized. When I was at Jefferson Davis Community College, one of my advisers just handed me a book and told me to look through it. Speech excited me so I started looking things up about it.”
Continuing her education at Auburn University in Montgomery, White enrolled in the speech program and graduated in 1995. “I entered it and I fell in love with it,” commented White. Within the month of graduation, White began working at Sheffield City Schools in Sheffield, Alabama. After 8 years in North Alabama, White and her family moved back home to Brewton. “I landed the job here with Brewton City Schools, and I have been here ever since,” said White. In 2007, White graduated with her master’s degree from the University of North Alabama in special education.
With her many years of experience and her high level of education, Principal Barry Wood considered the transition a perfect fit. “I was very grateful in this case we were really able to capitalize on Mrs. White’s talents and put her where she has a passion for it and again that is going to benefit the children and that is what it is all about,” he said. Director of Programs Mrs. Heidi Knapp said that White will be an asset to the program. “Her experience serving Pre-K children is going to be invaluable to our Pre-K program. I think that is key in last year’s success, and it is going to be key going forward, as we try to put some of our very best people in those positions,” said Knapp.
Reflecting on her previous role, White says that the transition is bittersweet. “I will miss all of my speech babies,” said White. Building relationships with the parents and students, White shared how rewarding her position has been. “The thing I love the most is seeing that child first come in, as far as speech, the child that no one understands, the child that the teacher looks at me and says, ‘Help,’” said White. Working closely with these students, parents and teachers, White was able to play a crucial role in his or her development. She continued, “And then to see a child a couple of years down the road (sometimes it takes a little less, sometimes a little longer-depends) and you see them go into a play and they stand up there so proud and they speak beautifully.” Moments like those are what kept White motivated during her many years of service.
Moving forward, White is grateful for the opportunity to continue working with students. “I am very excited about the adventures ahead in my new position. I always knew that one day I wanted to work in a preschool setting full time so when this opportunity was presented to me, I knew I could not pass it up,” said White.
Welcoming White to the program, Superintendent Kenneth Varner said, “Kim White has done a great job for Brewton City Schools in her previous assignment. We are excited for her to have the opportunity to mentor these young students. Parents will appreciate her character and professionalism in the way she teaches their children.”
White lives in Brewton and is married to Greg White. Together, they have two children-Anna Grace, a sophomore at Troy University and Adam, a sophomore at T.R. Miller High School.