Teachers impact students


Phil Washington posing in his Farmington classroom. Wearing his African heritage clothing.

Azuare Singleton-Moton, Editor

Phil Washington, social studies teacher, recently passed away, and an outpouring of love for him appeared on social media.  He worked in the Farmington district for 18 years and was very active in the community.

Over the years, he worked at Farmington High School, East Middle School, Harrison High School, and, more recently, North Farmington High School. While teaching, he coached wrestling at North Farmington and track at East.

Washington went above and beyond to help his students succeed. Students described him as always having a smile on his face and recalled how he carried himself so positively. Washington was a very hands on teacher.

Washington made a huge impact during his time in the Farmington district. Everywhere he went he just touched people’s lives and pushed students to do more than what they thought they could do.

While I never had him as a teacher, I can see the hole that he has left in our district for both fellow students and faculty. Every time I passed him in the hall, he always looked happy and spoke encouraging words. Another student had the same outlook.

“I’ll never forget him and how he inspired me so much. He was always very helpful, a role model, and always encouraged me to be/do my best,” said Michaela Jenkins,12.

Washington left a huge gap in the Farmington District. With his positive outlook on life and dedication to his job, there is no one teacher that can fill up that space. It is a good thing that we still have teachers that will work hard to help out their students.It’s all about taking extra time to help students or simply having a conversation.

On the subject of what teacher is making the biggest impact, students identified Angel Gippert, choir teacher. These students describe her as caring, loving and devoted to her work. Any time a student needs help or to talk, Gippert is always there.

Many students call her a second mom because she exudes a welcoming environment to all students and pushes them to be their very best.

“Whenever I have a personal issues we would go into her office and talk about it. I love how she never lets anyone tell her who she is or how to act. She is like a Auntie to me,” said Zaccary Gains, 10.

“When I wasn’t able to find a pianist for a city competition, she tried her best to fit me in her busy schedule to help with my music and accompany me for my performance,”  said Antoine McCoy, 12.