Mary Blenk-Serrin - Special Education Teaching Assistant
My name is Mary Serrin , I have worked in the Special Education field for approximately thirty years and am a firm believer in school inclusion.
I grew up in Exeter N.H. with five brothers and two sisters in a strict Catholic family with twelve years of Catholic education. My family moved to North Carolina in 1977 where I worked as a teaching assistant in a first grade classroom(yes, I'm showing my age).
I returned to New England a year later and lived in and around the Boston area. I worked fifty hours a week as a preschool teaching assistant while taking night classes at Boston University and Wheelock College to become a certified preschool teacher and eventually a daycare director for twelve years.
My time in Boston was spent in a multicultural, fully inclusive daycare ,where approximately one third of the students had special needs. I also did substitute work in an affiliated private elementary school, also multicultural and fully inclusive. I worked with people from all around the world and all walks of life and learned a tremendous amount about people, special needs and school inclusion.
In 1996, I got married, moved to Gloucester and started a family. In 2002, we moved back to Exeter and I continued to commute to Boston with my children for two more years. The most challenging thing I've ever done is to become a “good” parent, however, the benefits are far greater than the challenge. Part of becoming a good parent was leaving my job of twenty years and enrolling my kids in local schools so that our family could become part of a community. I have never looked back. We are currently raising two teenage boys who are a constant source of joy, humor and entertainment in our lives. This is my eighth year at Kensington Elementary School.