English department’s new teachers

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To kick off the new school year, Townsend Harris has received new additions to the English department. Teachers Kathy Lipinski, Kevin McDonaugh, and Aseefa Rasool have joined the THHS faculty. 

From working in museum education to being a tour guide at her college’s nationality rooms, Ms. Lipinski held a variety of jobs before becoming a teacher. She completed her student teaching at the Comprehensive Model School Project and at Bronx Science High School. Since starting at THHS, Ms. Lipinksi has felt very welcomed. “Teachers have introduced themselves to me and then introduced themselves to me again… to make sure [I] know that [I’m] welcome,” she said. Ms. Lipinski wishes for her students to understand that she appreciates each one of them as individuals, and that she “[values each student] as a person before anything else.”

New English teacher Mr. McDonaugh also specializes in Instructional Support Services (ISS). Mr. McDonaugh said that he has had a positive experience at THHS thus far. “I find it to be a very welcoming and supportive environment. Since I am in a completely new place, the whole experience itself is memorable,” he said. Looking ahead, Mr. McDonaugh is excited that “in a few months a whole new world of otherwise unknown people and experiences will become a part of [his] daily life.” 

Before coming to THHS, freshman English teacher Ms. Rasool taught middle school at I.S. 392 in Brooklyn and high school at St. Francis Prep. Now in her second year of teaching, Ms. Rasool has made it a priority to make the classroom a welcoming and comfortable environment for all her students. “I hope that my students take away that it’s okay to express themselves and say what they are thinking… I want them to open up and feel comfortable in their own skin,” she said.

Starting the school year in a new environment, the teachers are excited to see their students grow and develop. “I teach ninth graders and it’s a transitional year. It can be really scary and nerve-wracking to start high school, so it’ll be more interesting to see them come out of their shell, feel more comfortable in high school, feel more confident in their English skills, and I’m really looking forward to that,” Mr. McDonaugh said.