EDCOE Team Member Spotlight - Sam Parcher
00:00 AM - April 06, 2021
Briefly describe your background (where you grew up, family, why you came to work for EDCOE).
I grew up in El Dorado County, graduating from Ponderosa High. After high school I moved around the West Coast, spending time in Hawaii and Southern California and dabbling in a number of jobs including radio broadcasting, journalism, and hospital records. I eventually graduated from Sacramento State with a degree in Public Relations, but realized shortly before graduation that PR and marketing were not my path. I decided to become a teacher, inspired primarily by the experience I had as a student in El Dorado County. After earning a Master’s Degree in Education from USC, I returned to El Dorado County to give back to the education system that so inspired me. I began working for Charter Alternative Programs in 2017.
What is your department, title, and how long have you worked for EDCOE?
I have worked for Charter Alternative Programs for 4 years and I have taken on a myriad of duties. I teach Government, Economics, and Art for Charter Connections Academy in addition to supporting students as a supervising teacher (a position in which I manage specific student’s paperwork, course planning, and act as a liaison between the teachers and families). When I am not teaching I also support my fellow teachers and design the school yearbook. I also hold the title of Strategic Communications Coordinator for Charter Alternative Programs. In this role, I help the many programs of Charter gain recognition in the press as well as communicate on the programs’ behalf digitally through program webpages and social media.
Describe how your role helps support programs/schools/students directly or indirectly.
Through my various duties, I help our program and students by being a foundation of support. I prop up the students through educating them in the classroom and guiding them as a supervising teacher, preparing them for the real world. I support the teachers and programs as a whole by promoting the schools and celebrating the amazing lessons and events that our teachers take the time to create.
What are you and your team doing to support education during COVID-19?
Charter Alternative Programs as a whole has stepped up amazingly during COVID-19. Teachers learned how to use a new education program (Canvas), how to zoom, how to record in-person lessons for distance learners, and have increased their communication with students on a weekly basis, reaching out to all families - but distance learners especially - to ensure that they have the strongest support system in place to succeed during this difficult situation.
What do you most appreciate about your department/team?
I have always been astounded by Charter’s ability to see students as individuals and strive to help each student achieve their full potential. The amount of care and interest our staff takes in each and every student’s path to success is unlike any other school/district I have worked in. That appreciation has only grown during COVID. I am amazed by not only the capabilities of the staff as educators but their capacity for empathy and grace with families that are struggling with the challenges of learning during COVID-19.
What is your proudest moment at EDCOE? Why?
My proudest moment at EDCOE would be the completion of Charter Home Study Academy’s Craft Faire this year. This is one of my favorite events, so in order to make it happen while maintaining COVID compliance, I designed a webpage to allow students to create little individual online shops. It went incredibly well, and I am so proud of the way the students and staff of CHSA carried out the vision.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I love spending time with my 3-year-old daughter, Mae. My favorite thing to do with her is travel but whether we are reading, building, or riding bikes, I always have fun experiencing the world through her eyes.
What is something many people may not know about you?
Many people may not know that I used to work at Disneyland in the photo and character department. Because of my time working for Mickey, I know an alarming amount of trivia about the Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney.
If you could meet anyone in the world, living or deceased, who would it be and why?
If I could meet anyone in the world, living or deceased, I would likely choose Jim Henson. I have grown up as a huge fan of the Muppets and Henson’s storytelling abilities. Above that, I believe that his influence on early education via programs like “Sesame Street” and “Fraggle Rock” is remarkable. There is something to be said about entertainment that my parents watched, I watched, and now my daughter also enjoys. I would like to deconstruct that with him.
From supervisor, Mike Harris, Principal, Charter University Prep & Charter Connections Academy:
Sam brings the ability to understand complex situations and the willingness to do the hard work towards serving the students and fellow staff members. She is self-sacrificing, to the point where I have to restrict her from volunteering more. Sam has been a terrific person to bounce ideas off of and help me in making big-picture decisions. Sam brings her personal drive to her classes, challenging students and supporting them to learn and grow as individuals.