Position: Secondary Math Teacher School: Excel Academy at Francis M. Wood High School
School District: Baltimore City Public Schools
City, State: Baltimore, Maryland
About the Nominee: Wilfried Kipre was nominated by a colleague, Claude Call.
Excel Academy is a school designed for over-age, under-credited students who want to finish their high school education. Many of the students, who come from all over the city rather than the immediate neighborhood, feel as if they have been passed along or unjustly punished in the past, regardless of their grades or their attendance. More than 25% of the students are special education students, and the school does not receive much in terms of financial support; the school fights for every single nickel it receives. This is where Wilfried Kipre comes in.
Mr. Kipre is a Math teacher at Excel Academy who invariably puts in all of the extra time that his students need to succeed. He stays late to work with students nearly every day of the school year. In fact, Mr. Kipre is often one of the last people to leave the building most days. Despite the workload placed upon him, in addition to the one he takes on for himself, he maintains a cheerful demeanor and a sense of humor. Mr. Kipre can be a stickler for school policies, but the students respond to him in a positive way rather than giving him a hard time. Clearly, he has earned their respect, and many students have succeeded specifically because of his willingness to help students get themselves into a position to graduate, an achievement that may have seemed impossible when they first enrolled. His colleagues are proud that he is a LifeChanger for so many students!