Wakefield’s 2022 Teacher Assistant of the Year inspires young students


Staff Photo by Jordan McIntyre

Paula Adam is a Special Education teacher and Wakefield’s 2022 Teacher Assistant of the Year. Throughout Adam’s years at Wakefield she has learned a lot, not only from her fellow staff but her students as well.

Jordan McIntyre, Co-News Editor

Paula Adam, Wakefield High School’s 2022 Teacher Assistant of the Year, has positively influenced her students along with her colleagues in more ways than one. Apart from her sense of humor and joking personality, Adam has greatly assisted her students in growing both academically and socially. 

Adam is a part of an Extended Content Standards class at Wakefield, also known as ECS, which is a program designed for students who have a significant cognitive disability, but before getting a job at the school she has had many diverse careers.

Prior to becoming an instructional assistant, I have done many things from working in the fast food industry, to being a travel agent for the military, to being a bus driver, to being an advocate for special needs children,” Adam said. 

Adam first got into education when she had a child born with special needs. Through advocating for her daughter, she found her true passion: working with special education kids. 

“[I want to teach my students] to be as independent as possible, to use thought and reason to solve everyday problems that may come their way,” Adam said. 

Takisha Henry works with Adam on a daily basis and has nothing but good things to say about her and how she connects with her students. 

It’s our differences that make us beautiful, interesting, amazing humans.

— Adam

“Mrs. Adam is a reliable, dependable, hard worker who loves working with the students,” Henry said. “She does a great job creating boom cards and interactive Jeopardy games of student’s goals and end-of-the-lesson reviews.”

Even in the background, Adam is putting hard work into her students’ education and ensuring that they reach their highest potential. 

Adam is grateful for the title of Teacher Assistant of the Year and has benefited from other staff members and her students at Wakefield throughout the years.

“I have learned so much from the diverse community that makes up Wakefield High School, not just about others but about myself as well,” Adam said. “It’s our differences that make us beautiful, interesting, amazing humans.”