Who’s New at RHS: Ms. LaPara


Photo courtesy of Gaelvision.

Ms.Angela LaPara is a new teacher here at Roxbury High School. She teaches ESL (English as a Second Language) and Italian. I had the pleasure of interviewing Ms. LaPara to get to know her better. Fortunately, She was able to experience Roxbury before the pandemic hit and before wearing masks in the school hallways was the new “normal.”

LaPara started December 1st of last year, but quickly had to transition into virtual learning due to the pandemic. After 21 years of teaching, she decided to continue her teaching career here at our very own Roxbury High School due to its reputation of excellence. She also chose RHS to continue her career in teaching is because she was drawn to the  community involvement and the caring administration that make RHS special. 

Being the “new person” in any situation is hard without a support system and a welcoming environment. She explained that Roxbury High School has been very welcoming. She was able to make some friends, such as Mrs. Jones and Mrs. Hollenbeck. She states that they are  “wonderful to work with.” She also explained that RHS is such a welcoming school and a great environment to work in and that she is grateful to be a part of our wonderful staff. 

Something that we are all experiencing in this very bizarre year is having to incorporate virtual applications into learning. The pandemic has brought about challenges for everybody and we have all had to modify our way of living. As teacher, this is a challenge because you have to make sure that the students are still benefiting and learning. While interviewing LaPara, I got insight on a teacher’s perspective to all the modifications needed in order to make this school year work for both the student’s and the teachers…

In the interview, she described her experience of being a new teacher here at RHS during this atypical school year. As many of us are experiencing adjustments as students, teachers are also adjusting. Like many other teachers and students, she prefers in-person teaching as opposed to virtual learning. Her main goal in this first year here at RHS is to overcome the challenges brought by the COVID-19 Pandemic. 

A major part of teaching is the impact made on students. When asked what her favorite moment with a student is she said, “There are many ‘aha’ moments it is difficult to pinpoint one.” LaPara said that the impact she would like to project onto her students is “Kindness and compassion.” During her remaining years here at Roxbury High School, she said she would like to help grow and expand the Italian program at RHS and make a difference in her ESL students’ lives so they can become the best versions of themselves. If she could send one note to her past self she would say, “Nothing will ever work out perfectly!” and that is a message we should all keep in our minds while going through such difficult times during this pandemic.