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Hampton City Schools names 2022-2023 Teacher of the Year


At the meeting of the Hampton School Board on May 4, 2022, the Hampton City Schools 2022-2023 Teacher of the Year was announced. Congratulations to Katelyn Deel, an English teacher at Phoebus High School, for being selected as the citywide Teacher of the Year.


Ms. Deel is a native Hamptonian who attended Tucker-Capps Fundamental Elementary School, Eaton Fundamental Middle School, and is a Bethel High School graduate. She has spent her five years in education serving the students and families of Hampton City Schools. 


Deel earned a bachelor of arts degree in English from Virginia Commonwealth University.


“At the end of the day, what makes me smile the most when it comes to my students is just them being them,” said Deel. “Teaching in general is my favorite thing to do.”


She also added, “I have wanted to be a teacher since I was 3 years old. This has been the only career plan I have ever had. It is hard for me to see myself doing anything else, despite the challenges the field of education faces. I learned several years ago to find ‘my why' and Phoebus High School has let me figure that out year after year. My favorite part about teaching is the relationships that I build with the students -- in the hall, at football games, field trips, one-on-one conversations, and silly jokes. In addition to my relationships with students, I have made long-lasting friendships with adults. I have seen my friends get married and have babies. We have gone on trips together and collaborated in and out of the classroom. I cannot wait to see what we do next!”


Deel says, “This year, ‘whatever it takes’ looks like worrying for my students’ mental health more than their grade point average, maintaining equitable grading practices, understanding that their behaviors, though sometimes not what I may be looking for at the moment, are indicative of something larger than me, larger than them, but understanding that I have the capacity to help them when I am willing to do ‘whatever it takes’.”


Deel participated in the Community Priorities Workshop this year, is the building’s Teacher Advisory Committee (TAC) representative, and also serves as the co-sponsor of the Model United Nations club. In the past she served as the sponsor of the freshman class.


Hampton City Schools is fortunate to have such an outstanding teacher guiding our students toward a future where they can become lifelong learners and achieve their dreams. Ms. Deel is now eligible to compete for statewide honors.