TWIN FALLS — A special education teacher in Twin Falls is being recognized for her work by the Council For Exceptional Children (CEC). The CEC is a professional association of educators that works to advance the success of students living with disabilities.
This past summer, the CEC celebrated its 100th anniversary and is highlighting the work of 100 teachers across the country and their efforts to make a better learning environment for their students.
Sasha Anderson is one of those teachers being honored for her work. Anderson started her career with the Twin Falls School District in 2015 as a special education teacher. At the beginning of 2021, she took on a new role as a district-wide special education consulting teacher.
During her time with the district, Anderson has focused on enhancing her student's communications skills.
“A huge focus for me in my classroom was developing independence for sure, which is the goal of all special education," said Anderson. "But, we also really heavily focused on social skills.”
Although Anderson was the one to be honored, she credits her supervisor, Cecelia Charland, who is also a fellow consulting teacher, for helping her grow and become the teacher she is today.
“I learned a lot from her," said Anderson. "She was very supportive of me as I worked through and grew through the growing pains of developing my program.”
Charland was the one who heard about the award and nominated Anderson without hesitation.
“I thought what a great honor for her to be nominated and then hopefully be selected," said Charland. "It was also a nice way to honor the Twin Falls School District, that we have a special education teacher at her level.”
From the start, Charland felt that Anderson demonstrated all the right qualities to be recognized for this award due to the time, care, and passion she put in with all of her students.
“She was a natural coming in and organizing her classroom, building rapport with her students and parents, who can be challenging," said Charland. "And setting up, like she said, social interaction and all of the life skills that were needed.”
As appreciative as Anderson is for being honored by the Council for Exception Children, she is glad the association is taking notice of all the teachers working to make their classroom a better learning environment.
“The fact that they are trying to seek out and honor some of their members is pretty awesome," said Anderson. "I think they’re just trying to show that the reason they’re successful is because of a lot of the members that they have.”