Beth Fehlbaum overcame a lot. As a young child, she was constantly told that she was stupid; and she grew up thinking that she was. She married her high school sweetheart at 18 and started a family.
When Fehlbaum's youngest child went to all-day kindergarten, Fehlbaum decided to earn her bachelor's degree. She enrolled in Cedar Valley Community College, part of the Dallas County Community College District. She credits her great math instructors with helping her get through courses that some would say are "for stupid people." She transferred to the University of Texas at Arlington and graduated with a bachelor's in English cum laude.
"When I went to college, my world came alive. I took 18 hours a semester. It wasn't easy while raising three children and taking care of all my domestic goddess duties," said Fehlbaum.
Fehlbaum began teaching at Red Oak Independent School District (ISD). Wanting to teach older students again, she moved to DeSoto ISD and taught eighth grade. Later, she was honored to become the only seventh grade English teacher at Maypearl Junior High School. She started working for Mesquite ISD at A.C. New Middle School. Mesquite ISD began requiring their teachers to have a master's degree. Fehlbaum went to Texas A&M University at Commerce and earned a master's degree in elementary education with a focus in reading.
Wanting to teach closer to home, Fehlbaum taught fourth and fifth grade English-Language Arts in the dual language program at Athens Intermediate School. She loved teaching but after eight years, longed to teach older children. She presently teaches seventh grade English-Language Arts and Reading at Crandall Middle School.
Fehlbaum has published three books in the young adult contemporary fiction genre: "Courage in Patience," "Hope in Patience," and her newest book "Big Fat Disaster."
Fehlbaum is pursuing her second master's in English so she can teach at a community college.
When it comes to going back to school and handling the demands of a family, Fehlbaum said, "It takes a lot of organization to balance your daily 'have-tos' with your 'want-tos.' Get a calendar and use it. I am living proof that a person who grows up being told that they are stupid can overcome and not only achieve honor student status, but make a huge difference in children's lives," said Fehlbaum.
Robin D. Everson is a native Chicagoan who resides in Dallas, Texas. Her appreciation for art, food, wine, people and places has helped her become a well-respected journalist. A life-long lover of education, Robin seeks to learn and enlighten others about culture. You can find her work at Examiner.com
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