Phenomenal. Goes out of her way. Nothing but praise. Help them succeed. Nurtured over the years. Helped to turn their lives around.
These are a few of the words and phrases shared about Ms. Carina Garcia Kirk, a mentor at HOPE at Front Range Academy – Broomfield. Ms. Garcia Kirk is a long-time educator with HOPE Online Learning Academy Co-Op. She’s worked with HOPE’s middle and high school students for the last nine years.
“I enjoy getting to see these kids progress through to graduation,” said Ms. Garcia Kirk. “This work is challenging, but I am doing it for the kids.”
Ms. Garcia Kirk holds a degree in social work. She was led to HOPE through a practicum she did in college. The supportive staff and what the HOPE model provides students are the reasons she’s stayed.
“HOPE provides kids who don’t fit the traditional school setting a place to find the confidence they need for the real world,” she said. “We provide a personal, caring environment where we can get to know the students and work with them one-on-one on their studies.”
One of Ms. Garcia Kirk’s students had this to say about her.
“Ms. Garcia Kirk is the best mentor ever! She has been there for me since 8th grade. She really is a big part of who I am today. Before this school I never thought teachers could be as amazing as her. She has given me life advice, and she has constantly proven that she does this job for us. She is always pushing me forward. I was going to get my GED, but she convinced me to stay. Because I know I can amount to better. She has inspired me for the longest time to be a better person and I have become one. She will definitely always be my reason for finishing high school. She loves to help people, and she is like my mother in a way. She pushed me to realize how smart I am, and she is a great mentor.”
Ms. Garcia Kirk says she keeps in touch with many of her graduates and some have even come back to get advice on college or careers from her. This summer she also helped a student and her family with a funeral for their brother/son.
“I’m proud of my students. There are so many great stories of what they’ve overcome to succeed,” she said.
HOPE at Front Range Academy – Broomfield’s Director, Ms. Dare, says Ms. Garcia Kirk is one of the most sincere mentors she’s ever had.
“She works very hard to ensure that her students are successful in academics and their life skills,” Ms. Dare said.
One of Ms. Garcia Kirk’s colleagues, Ms. Monck, a HOPE Moderate Needs Teacher, is inspired by her dedication.
“Ms. Garcia Kirk is a top-notch HOPE mentor. She does everything she can to help our students. Parents have nothing but praise for her work,” she said.
This is just one example of the outstanding staff HOPE Online Learning Academy Co-Op has across the state. HOPE is a blended online public k-12 charter school which delivers its curriculum through community-based Learning Centers from Denver to Greeley, Fort Collins, Leadville, Colorado Springs and Pueblo. Students attend Learning Centers five days a week and rotate between online lessons and face-to-face classroom instruction. The award-winning curriculum exceeds state standards. HOPE also offers low student-educator ratios and is an accredited high school diploma program, with graduates going on to attend college at institutions from the University of Denver to the University of Northern Colorado and beyond. Additionally, HOPE provides character development programs, including physical education, music, the arts and extra-curricular activities such as competitive sports, specialty clubs, talent shows and more. Enrollment for 2015/2016 is starting soon. For more information, visit hopeonline.org or call 720-402-3000.