The League School welcomed several new staff members last week, including two familiar faces who are returning to the school after some time away.
A total of eight staff members took part in new staff orientation from Jan. 9-13, and included in this group was head teacher Tara Faiella and Speech/Language Pathologist Lana Falvey. Both worked at League School previously and are excited to be back.
They each shared their thoughts on returning to the school after time away.
Tara worked at League School from 2019 through June of last year. After getting married last April she wanted to travel the world, and knew if she didn’t take the opportunity now she may never have it again.
She enjoyed a once-in-a-lifetime honeymoon experience backpacking through Europe, with stops in Italy, Greece, Spain and Iceland, as well as hiking the Pacific Crest Trail along the west coast of the United States.
When she returned she took a teaching position at a school district in the area, but knew immediately that it wasn’t for her.
“It took me three days to realize that it just wasn’t the League School,” Tara said. “It was a wonderful district and I’m sure it’s a great fit for many teachers, but it wasn’t for me. I could tell right away that I was missing something.”
Tara applied to return to League School, and was not only hired back but will be returning to her old classroom with most of the same students. She will be returning as a head teacher in the Transitions program.
“This whole school environment is just so warm and so energetic,” she said. “Being back is a little surreal, but I’ve been welcomed with such open arms by everyone. Even during orientation when I was taking the tour for new hires, teachers kept coming out of their rooms to say hello and give me hugs. I know I definitely made the right choice to come back, and can’t wait to get started.”
Tara remembers during her first stint with the school how challenging it was for staff to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. She said she is looking forward to returning now that restrictions have eased.
“The whole mood is so positive now and I think everyone is in a great place,” she said. “Personally, I just can’t wait to get started and work with my kids again.”
Lana worked at League School as a Speech/Language Pathologist in the Pathfinders program from 2011-2015. She also did her final graduate school clinical placement at the school while a student in the MGH Institute of Health Professions.
She left the school to start a family, but remembers missing it from the first day she was gone. She kept in touch with staff members and maintained relationships over the years, and never ruled out returning if the situation was right.
“Coming back was always in the back of my mind,” she said. “I knew how special the school was, and you never forget that.”
She made the decision to come back to the school this year, and was thrilled to be able to return to her old position.
“The Pathfinders program is just so wonderful, how we can really make positive connections with the students and see them succeed both in school and out in the community,” she said. “It’s great to be back.”
She said the school has only improved in the years she has been away.
“Right from the first day of orientation I could tell how our team leaders really want what’s best for us and give us the tools we need to succeed,” she said. “I feel so supported here, and in the end that’s what’s in the best interest of the students. It’s a great team to be a part of, for sure.”
Both Tara and Lana officially returned to their positions on Tuesday, Jan. 17.
In addition, several new staff members were welcomed to the school last week. They include:
- Alexandra Joseph, Assistant Teacher
- Kelsey Weiland, Assistant Teacher
- Nick Davoli, Assistant Teacher
- Lindsey Ludwig, Direct Support
- Renee Altimari, Clinician
- Pamela Owens, Residential Relief Nurse
New staff took part in a week-long training and orientation session last week that included taking a tour of the school and residential buildings, engaging in classroom observations, learning about the school’s educational philosophy and mission, meeting with school administrators, and much more.
To learn more about the current openings at the League School, click here.