Campus News: Lee Alumna Named Teacher of the Month

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Lee Alumna Named Teacher of the Month
Cana Cooper - 2/18/2020

Lee University alumna Kelsey Fowler has been named a Times Free Press Teacher of the Month. Fowler teaches algebra 2 and geometry at the Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy (CGLA).


"My goal as a teacher is to provide a top-notch education to my students, equipping them to attend colleges or universities, if they so desire, and offering hope in the process of learning mathematics," said Fowler. "I strive daily to make math understandable, even beautiful. There are so many exquisite patterns and connections within the subject.  I love when students begin to see those pieces and then embrace the learning process."


Fowler graduated from Lee University in May 2018 with a degree in mathematics education and began teaching at CGLA that fall.


"I am eternally grateful for the role that Lee University has played in my life," said Fowler. "While at Lee, I was amply prepared and encouraged to step into my calling. It's been really cool to see how God used each of these experiences to prepare me for my work at CGLA."


According to Fowler, one way she learned how to teach mathematics was working as a teaching assistant for Dr. Laura Singletary, associate professor of mathematics at Lee.  Fowler also states she values the advice and guidance she gained from the Helen DeVos College of Education, including mentorship from Lee education professors Dr. Delia Price and Dr. Ashley Smith. Fowler also visited Colombia, South America, with the TESOL program (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) to practice teaching and Spanish skills while attending Lee.


Fowler was nominated for this award by Dr. Elaine Swafford, CEO of CGLA, because of Fowler's success at the school.


"Having just finished my first year of teaching and beginning my second year, I was encouraged by Dr. Swafford's recognition of my success," said Fowler. "However, the success truly belongs to my students. I was blown away by such a great first year, and we were so proud of our girls."


During her first year, Fowler's students outperformed the state and Hamilton County Schools on TNReady math assessments and Fowler earned a Level 5 Tennessee Value-Added Assessment System score for her students' growth and achievement.


"The success shows me that CGLA is working for many in our city," said Fowler. "We are inspiring hope and changing trajectories for our students."


The Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy is a learning community for girls in grades 6-12.


The Teacher of the Month series, sponsored by Kia of Chattanooga, recognizes a local educator who is making a difference in the classroom every day. It was launched in September 2019. Nominations are accepted each month from parents, students, community members, and even other teachers. The winner is selected by an external committee and is awarded a variety of prizes.


To learn more about the Teacher of the Month award, visit  

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