Difference-Maker: Allyson McCloud

Posted by Kelly Emerson - 01 February, 2018

We have a number of Randolph employees whose roles are unique to our school and whose work makes a difference to the quality of the student experience. Middle School Dean of Academic Support Allyson McCloud is one of Randolph's Difference-Makers.

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What’s different about your work here?

Every moment and every task is related to supporting our students.  I work with our Middle School Dean of Students, Jennifer Ragsdale, our Head of Middle School, Clay Elliott, and the entire faculty to meet the academic, social, and emotional needs of our Middle School students.

What does a typical day look like?

My daily work is always focused on Middle School student support. Typically, I am focused on monitoring our students’ academic progress. I gather information from faculty members, students, families, tutors, counselors, administrators, and work with these same groups to create or modify supports in place at school and home.

And a great day?

A great day at work includes many greetings and smiles from colleagues and students in the hallways, meaningful conversations with students in the work toward their goals, and hearing positive anecdotes about our students’ successes.

People always ask...

Why do you work with middle school students?

What types of academic support does Randolph provide?

What study skills do you work on in each grade?

What is typical for this grade?

How can we help our child at home? 

[Check out our K-6 ebook for lots of great information on 5th and 6th grade.]

Why do you work with middle school students?

I work with middle school students because they are full of life and curiosity.  Middle school students are capable of deep thinking and innovative application, and it is so rewarding to arm them with the tools to take on these tasks.  Personally, I had one middle school teacher who truly loved working with this age group, and I strive to be as empathetic, encouraging, and dedicated as she was for me and my classmates.

At school, I’m never without … 

A pen and paper to jot down info that comes in the hallway, lunch room…anywhere!

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What does a child need to be happy/successful at school?

Students need to feel safe — physically and emotionally — to be ready to learn. We offer many opportunities to take safe risks and grow as learners and people, and students must feel they will be supported while doing so.

 

Here's what people should understand about middle school age kids:

Infancy is the only time in a person’s life that they undergo more changes than in middle school. Our students are engaging, full of energy and laughter, and are ready to be challenged to think in new ways. Every day is different. It’s important for us to realize that each day will present new challenges, and acknowledge these challenges with grace and empathy. We focus on the end result and celebrate the everyday successes as students get closer to those goals.

What are some things you love about being at Randolph?

The welcoming community. From my first contact with the School, people offered my family support with everything we needed — finding a home, preschool, gym, doctors. When a member of our community has any type of need — from academic to social to meals — multiple people offer their assistance. And in terms of my work, I love that I have the opportunity on a daily basis to help our students with challenges of all sizes.

Favorite school tradition?

Opening Convocation is a touching moment for the entire community. The seniors are clearly proud of their school, and that pride and excitement is transmitted to our youngest students.

You can follow Mrs. McCloud on Twitter @AllyMc_C

Topics: academic challenge, Academics, challenge, middle school, difference maker, dean

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