The Academy with a Heart


At the Trojan Academy over half of their staff is new. With that may come some challenges, but these five teachers are showing their passion for their students and love for their co-workers. These teachers are Barbra Burks, Cassandra Owens, Meloney Deweese, Lesley Shive, and Amber Collins. All female teachers with a passion to teach others. Burks teaches leadership literacy, Owens teaches English, Deweese teaches ACT prep, and Collins teaches algebra.  

Each teacher has her own reason why she chose the teaching pathway. The majority chose this career because they had passionate teachers in their past who inspired them or it was a common career in their family. Deweese’s response was a bit different than the others.

“I enjoy helping children, and at the time I saw the lack of qualified teachers when my older children were in school. I felt like it was a need in the community that needed to be filled,” said Deweese.  

The teachers enjoy the staff, students, workspace and schedule at the academy.

The only new addition to the Barren schools system is Collins. The other teachers had previously worked somewhere in the Barren schools system like, for instance, Burks had taught at the alternative school for 21 years. Owens had taught at the middle school teaching at-risk readers. Shive had previously taught at the academy for 8 years. Deweese had been a long term substitute for the high school and worked at Temple Hill and Red Cross.

Each teacher has her own reasons for why they chose the academy. Whether it had been a recommendation from someone they knew or from someone already at the academy.

“I chose the academy because previously I had been working at the middle school, and my husband actually works at the Innovation Zone and for several years he has been encouraging me to come to Barren. I decided to look at job availability this past summer,,” Owens said. “There were two jobs that I could do here at the academy and I interviewed for both of them and it just all happened when it was supposed to.”

These teachers had these words of wisdom to share.These are some words of wisdom from the teachers.

“Always follow your heart,” said Shive.

“The Trojan Academy is a great place to work,” Burks said.

To conclude Owens said, “I look forward to an amazing year at The Trojan Academy.”