Jenri Conley, a Shawnee Mission West ninth-grade English teacher, was surprised with a Crash the Class recognition from Kansas State University (KSU).
Crash the Class was created to honor new teachers who are going above and beyond in their early teaching careers. After being nominated by a KSU faculty member, one teacher a month is selected to be surprised and thanked for the great work put in during the year.
Conley says she was stunned to walk into a classroom full of students and faculty ready to honor her.
“It was really humbling and I was very honored,” Conley said. “I didn’t know what was happening until I walked in and everyone was here. It was a really cool moment.”
KSU staff also surprised Conley with a video presentation of testimonials from students and staff thanking her for all she has done so far as an educator.
While the first year of teaching can be challenging, hearing her students and fellow teachers acknowledge her hard work was a touching experience, Conley added. Conley’s students say she provides a positive and soothing environment in her classroom.
“She makes lessons really fun and exciting to participate in. She is extremely patient and takes the time to make sure everyone understands what we are learning.” Freshman August Snyder said.
“What draws people in most is her fearlessness as a teacher.” Shawnee Mission West English Language Arts department chair Amanda Sherraden gushed. “She truly dives in feet first.”