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Clinton teacher returns to first classroom

Jasmine Davidson, a first grade teacher at Clinton Elementary School, is happy to be back not only in the school she attended as a student, but the very same classroom she learned her core subjects in.

Around the time Davidson switched from teaching third grade to first in 2020, her own kindergarten teacher, Karen Stauderm, retired. This left her original classroom available for Davidson to use.

“This was the room that was available, so I was like, ‘That is so cool,’” Davidson said. “I never would have thought that I would be teaching in the same classroom I was in when I was five.”

Davidson was first inspired to go into education by her third grade teacher, Ms. Ewing, who had Davidson and her classmates work with kindergarten students. Ever since she started working for the district in 2013, Davidson sees it as a way to give back.

“I had some really great teachers,” she said. “They’ve inspired me, they’ve built me up.”

Being from Poughkeepsie herself, Davidson understands the needs of her families and helps students when needed, but tells them the answers to assignments cannot be handed to them.

“They do not learn that way,” she explained. “They have to make an effort and if they really can’t do it, then I can show you and help you.”

Throughout her years as a student and teacher, the biggest changes Davidson has seen are new hires and curriculum, such as Fundations for emerging readers.

“That is a good change for us to get the students to start reading and writing,” Davidson said of Fundations.

After teaching in three different classrooms at Krieger and one other in Clinton, Davidson hopes to stay in her current room for the remainder of her teaching career.

“It feels like I’m supposed to be here,” Davidson said. “It feels like home.”