Kathy Shaffer, Hillsmere Elementary School
Passionate. Dedicated. Driven. Talented. A leader. These are just a few of the words used by many in the Hillsmere Elementary Community to describe an extraordinary volunteer.
The Board of Education is proud to honor Mrs. Kathy Shaffer as October’s Volunteer of the Month.
Hillsmere Principal, Jesse Mitchell, wrote appreciatively, “Mrs. Shaffer’s great service and contributions have had a tremendous impact on both our students and the greater school community.”
Mrs. Shaffer co-founded the Hillsmere Publishing Company, or HPC, a school based volunteer-run organization that is committed to having every child at Hillsmere write, publish and present a book. Her mission is to ensure every student sees him or herself as a published writer, and her enthusiasm has created a school-wide culture of self-assurance and confidence.
Kathy oversees all aspects of the HPC program. She mobilizes a team of volunteers, and then trains them to coach and edit the student writers. She types student drafts at home, and assembles each student’s book. Kathy arranges for events at the Annapolis Barnes and Noble and the public library to showcase the students’ books and she ensures the young writers have opportunities to meet and learn from published adult authors.
Mrs. Shaffer is, indeed, Hillsmere’s “Great Communicator.” She writes The Buzz, an electronic weekly newsletter, maintains the school’s PTA Facebook page, and prepares morning announcement messages. She even creates fliers for the numerous school events, including the ones she, organizes herself such as last year’s Holiday party at the Robinwood Recreational Center. At this event, children and their families enjoyed singing carols, listening to stories, crafts, games and snacks – all thanks to Kathy Shaffer’s talent to bring the community together.
From the Hillsmere Elementary Fun Fair to the Muffins for Mom and Donuts for Dads events, Kathy Shaffer ensures each event she’s involved with is a huge success.
Last but not least, Mrs. Shaffer generously volunteers her extensive marketing experience to write, produce and host The Parents’ Corner, a monthly 15 minute show on the AACPS cable t.v. and YouTube channels.
Principal Mitchel writes that Kathy Shaffer epitomizes the saying, “Those who can, do. Those who can do more, volunteer.” And volunteer she does.