Ellen: Inspiring Teacher Rachel Faust
To celebrate ten years of incredible guests on Ellen’s show, Ellen met an incredible teacher who is changing lives. Rachel Faust is a twenty-four-year-old first grade teacher at Van E. Blanton Elementary School in Miami, Florida. Rachel loves her job, but unfortunately, her students face a lot more challenges than most. Ninety-nine percent of them are below the poverty line, and for many of them, the only meals they receive are the ones they get at school.
Rachel described a time when she pulled a student aside for having her head down throughout a class. She was devastated when she realized that the little girl hadn’t eaten since lunchtime the previous day, and couldn’t focus because she was starving.
Ellen: Florida’s Van E. Blanton Elementary
Despite the hardships that its student faces, Van E. Blanton Elementary is producing incredible results. The school earned an “A” grade on the Florida State Standardized tests, and the teachers and faculty work together to help their students achieve under less than ideal circumstances. The teachers often pay for their own supplies, and Rachel admitted to having spent $1,000 of her own money setting up her classroom that year.
Rachel Faust joined Ellen and said, “I keep my positivity because my kids keep their positivity.” Rachel has been teaching for three years, having first signed up for the Teach for America program during her senior year of college. She ended up loving Van E. Blanton and its students so much, she decided to stay.
“They face so many obstacles, and yet they continue to rise above, and it’s incredible to watch,” Rachel said of her students.
Ellen: JCP Cares Program
Ellen is a spokesperson for JCPenney, and she explained the JCP Cares Program. When shopping at a JCPenney store, if something you purchase costs $35.50, you can pay $36, and the extra money will go to a charitable organization. This month, the organization is Teach for America.
JCP Cares wanted to give Rachel a $100,000 check for her school, which brought the dedicated young teacher to tears. Rachel Faust is certainly an amazing example for teachers everywhere.