LaKeisha Snipes — Lee County High School

This week’s Welcome To Sanford Teacher of the Week is LaKeisha Snipes, a math teacher at Lee County High School. A proud 2006 graduate of the school, Mrs. Snipes began her teaching career in 2008 while still in college.  She started as an instructional assistant at J. Glenn Edwards Elementary, before transferring to West Lee Middle School in the same position. After graduation from college in 2012, Mrs. Snipes became a 6th grade math teacher at West Lee and also assumed the role as Girls Basketball Coach. In fall 2018, Mrs. Snipes enjoyed a homecoming of sorts … returning to Lee County High School to become a math teacher and the Women’s Basketball Coach. As Mrs. Snipes puts it, “This is where I knew I would come back to when I walked across the stage here in 2006. I am a proud product of the Lee County School System. Once an Jacket, always a Jacket!!!”

In her very first year of teaching at the high school level in the 2018-19 school year, Mrs. Snipes was recognized by the North Carolina Council of Teachers of Mathematics as Lee County Secondary Math Teacher of the Year. At the time of the honor, her colleague and secondary math lead at West Lee Middle School, Susan Davis, commented “Her passion for teaching, her compassion for students, her high expectations for learning, and her deep content knowledge are just a few of the qualities that define LaKeisha as an outstanding mathematics teacher.”

Mrs. Snipes points to 2 essential characteristics that help to define her teaching style — concepts and communication.  She observes, “Conceptual is my whole style of teaching. Like with your times table, I want students to understand the math behind it, the conceptual aspect of it. I don’t teach tricks, I teach the math behind it.” Mrs. Snipes also enjoys teaching in small groups, noting “I make it my business to build relationships, and that has nothing to do with teaching math. You have to let your students know first that you care, and once they do, they’ll do whatever you ask them to do. It helps me facilitate their learning.”