Mrs. Melissa Rager: Special Education Science


   Mrs. Melissa Rager graduated from Illinois State University and has been in the education field since 2000. Before joining the Viking staff, Mrs. Rager taught at Ralston Elementary School in the Harlem school district. Later on she was asked to teach in the autism program at Harlem Middle School.

   “Guilford is a great place to be,” said Mrs. Rager, a Special Education Science teacher. “There are some really awesome people here. The staff has been super helpful and the students are some of the best behaved ones that I have ever worked with.” 

   Along with the challenges of being in a new building with new students and staff members, the changes in schooling because of COVID-19 regulations made for a complicated first year.

   “Having to wear masks has probably been the biggest challenge to me with being new to Guilford. I am a person who loves to smile and build relationships, and the masks have created  barriers when it comes to human connections.”

   Along with COVID-19 struggles, there have also been district and school-wide issues pertaining to multiple schedule changes throughout the year. The constant adjustments kept the school year interesting and students and staff on their toes.

   “It felt like as soon as everyone was getting used to making things work well then the schedule would change again. I am a flexible person and can go with the flow, but this year took a lot out of me and all of the unknowns and rolling with the punches wore on me.”

   Even though this is not Mrs. Rager’s first year teaching, there are still difficulties in being a teacher.

   “I think the hardest part with being a teacher would be finding the time to learn all the new things that come at us. Technology is constantly changing and evolving. I want to be up on all the new technology, but I wish I had more time to really learn it so I could be an expert at all of it.”