Former North Branch student returns as a teacher

RIPTON — The North Branch School in Ripton will be welcoming former NBS student Zelie Wright-Neil as the school’s first NBS Teaching Fellow.
Wright-Neil, of Leicester, who graduated from NBS in 2009, will work closely with Tal Birdsey, co-founder and head teacher, as well as the other teachers at the school while learning about the unique nature of the school’s mission to empower adolescent learners at this critical juncture of their lives.
As the school’s inaugural teaching fellow Wright-Neil will be immersed in all aspects of what it takes to run a small, independent school. “We want aspiring educators to see how a school like NBS can be made, what it is made of,” said Birdsey. “Zelie understands the process of the three-year program at NBS, and she will be a huge asset in supporting the students and being part of the school community. Our hope is that Zelie and future teaching fellows will take what they learn here into the broader educational culture.”
A recent graduate of St. Lawrence University, Wright-Neil has worked with the Counseling Service of Addison County and is currently enrolled in a Masters of Education program at Champlain College. “I am excited to return to NBS and I am particularly interested in learning how the students at NBS stay engaged.” says Wright-Neil. “One of the strengths of the school is that students truly feel invested in their education. They are part of a community and a family at the school and they work together to learn, strengthen and develop.” 

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