If the halls of Oakland Avenue Charter School seem familiar to Devyn Bungay, that’s because the new teacher once was a student there.
She has been hired as the fifth-grade language arts and social studies teacher, and this is her first official teaching job.
Bungay still is getting used to the fact that her co-workers were once her instructors. Her fourth-grade teacher, Joann Brouty, is among them.
“It’s still a little weird,” she said. “I still feel like I need to call them ‘Mrs.’
Bungay was an OACS Eagle from third through fifth grades. Her desire to become a teacher was piqued when he was a fifth-grader and selected to be a Teacher for the Day.
“I got placed in a kindergarten class, and I was in love,” she said.
She also has several people in her family who teach. After graduating from the University of North Florida, in Jacksonville, she returned to Orlando and was hoping for a position in Oakland because it’s a positive school with a great deal of parent involvement.
“I’ve always just had a heart for children and helping, and I’ve always been very much of an empath, so I wanted a career where I could be loving and help people who need it,” Bungay said.
Last week she was getting her classroom ready for students and making a plan to teach both virtual and face-to-face.
Her classroom theme this year centers around calmness.
“I feel like the students are probably stressed out with everything that’s going on,” Bungay said. “I just want the students to have an atmosphere that’s calming.”
When face-to-face learning begins Aug. 21, Bungay is prepared to teach both in class and virtually.
“For the kids at home we’re going to be doing small-group sessions with them like we would typically do small group in school,” she said. “We’ll just do it with a laptop. We’re trying to figure out whole-group instruction.”
Students participating in the at-school educational option will have access to a classroom library full of books that represent students of all backgrounds and promote diversity, positivity and resilience, she said.
Bungay has set up a wish list on Amazon for anyone wanting to help her stock her library. To see her book list, visit amzn.to/3fHeIXv
Community Editor Amy Quesinberry was born at the old West Orange Memorial Hospital and raised in Winter Garden. Aside from earning her journalism degree from the University of Georgia, she hasn’t strayed too far from her hometown and her three-mile bubble. She grew up reading The Winter Garden Times and knew in the eighth grade she wanted to write for her community newspaper. She has been part of the writing and editing team since 1990.