Degrees and Certifications:
Mrs. Jackie Morris
Welcome to my webpage! This is my third year at B.F.Grady and my fifteenth year teaching in special education! I grew up in Goldsboro and attended Eastern Wayne High School. I now live in Seven Springs with my husband and our furbabies! We raise Labradoodles (Bay River Labradoodles), and our chickens!
My academic background includes graduating from East Carolina University with a B.A-Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology. I decided to pursue a teaching career in special education via the lateral entry route. While taking classes at Salem College for licensure, I decided that going on for a Master of Arts degree in teaching special education would be an added benefit. After obtaining my M.A.T. degree, I just kept taking classes. I loved being around other educators and collaborating with people who shared the same interests professionally. I took classes at the doctorate level and I really craved getting a doctorate degree but life happened and I stopped after achieving an Ed.S-Education Specialist in Higher Education with a concentration in Sociology from Appalachian State University.
WHY SPECIAL EDUCATION?
A lot of people ask me why I chose special education rather than regular education as my teaching path. I remember as a child that I would line my stuffed animals up and teach them. I even had a green chalkboard that I wrote on! I'm not sure if my stuffed animal students had disabilities or not but a person in my life had a big impact on me and is probably the person responsible for my choice in areas of teaching. I had the most amazing experience growing up with my cousin Todd who is two years older than me. Todd was born without a chromosome which caused him to be pretty much non-verbal. In today's medical community, he would probably be considered a person with severe Autism. I never thought of anything being wrong with him. He was just Todd. He will just about worry someone over what color shirt they are wearing that day or bug them until he can get a cup of coffee! He points at lights and colors and just enjoys every second of his days. Todd absolutely loves the American flag, skulls, rainbows, and McDonalds!
Todd was definitely my inspiration but I also had personal reasons for choosing special education. Honestly, I struggled in my high school years academically due to health issues, so I really didn't enjoy learning during those years. I wasn't treated as a smart kid nor did I think of myself as smart. I wasn't labeled as having a disability but that is probably because in those years, only persons with severe disabilities or obvious disabiliites were labeled as different. I do remember not understanding Algebra at all! So, shortly after the first semester of my sophomore year, I was sent to learn math in a trailer with the coach. I have always struggled with math that involves the alphabet but somehow, I managed to make it through all of the required math classes to graduate high school and college. It wasn't easy and I think to myself, that is how my students probably feel about themselves. Some in math, others in reading, some in writing, others with social skills. Whatever my students struggle with, I can at least relate to having those same feelings and that is why I became a special educator. I want to empower my students to know that they can do anything they set their minds to. All they have to do is "want" it. I am here to help them with that "want"! I love my students and I love watching them learn!
Please let me know if there is anything I can help you with! I look forward to seeing my students soon! Let's have a great year!!