SOUTH KINGSTOWN – Leslie Perrin, a district literacy coach, was recently named South Kingstown teacher of the year.
Perrin said she grew up surrounded by teachers in her family.
“I think it’s sort of in our blood,” she said.
Many aunts and uncles in her family worked as teachers, her sister, brother and husband are teachers as well.
Perrin attended Rhode Island College where she earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education. In her undergraduate studies, Perrin’s concentration was in special education and for her graduate studies her concentration was in reading.
She came to South Kingstown after working for six months as a substitute teacher in her hometown of Warwick.
She saw an ad for a job opening at the special education preschool at the time.
Perrin, then 23, got the job and worked as a long-term substitute while the regular teacher was on maternity leave.
At the end of Perrin’s stint as a substitute, Peace Dale Elementary was opening as a larger school.
Perrin applied and interviewed to be a first grade teacher, a grade she taught for the last 20 years until this year.
This year, Perrin became a literacy coach, working throughout the district implementing the new reading workshop program.
Last summer, Perrin attended the reading workshop institute at Columbia University, which piloted the program. She continues to attend workshops on the program throughout the year and is planning to go to the institute again this August.
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