On Sunday, May 5, Blue Valley School District special education teacher Alexandra Paulson was honored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City (Blue KC) and Sporting Kansas City as the Blue KC Sporting Samaritan for May 2019.
“Alex Paulson is making a tremendous impact in the lives of her students,” said Christina Lively, Department Vice President, Marketing and Communications, Blue KC. “Her ability to be a steady presence in their lives and help them achieve the goal of higher education is truly commendable. She plays so many important roles for her students and is truly changing their lives for the better. We are pleased to honor her as a Blue KC Sporting Samaritan."
Since joining the Blue Valley School District two years ago, Paulson has served as part of the district’s GEAR Program, which provides a safe, small, structured and supportive learning community in which students receive individualized instruction in order to be empowered and accountable for their own academic achievement, interpersonal relationships and personal independence. While it’s a lofty mission, Paulson makes it personal through her commitment to engaging with her students in ways that are meaningful and important to them.
“I make it my mission to encourage all my students to have confidence in themselves and to be that amazing person they so naturally are,” said Paulson. “I believe in the goodness of people, and it very much guides me every day. School can look different for students. School should look different for some students. I ask myself all the time: ‘What is it that I hope my students learn?’ and ‘What do I hope they know before they leave my classroom?’ For me, those answers are empathy, conflict resolution, communication and teamwork.”
Known for her sincere love and compassion for her students, Paulson goes above and beyond the work inside the walls of the Blue Valley school buildings. She takes them on field trips and gives them opportunities to serve others. She also attends college visits with her students to help ease their stress and helps them practice proper etiquette in public.
“For her students she is a counselor, a teacher, a life coach, and most importantly a strongly needed friend,” said Paulson’s Blue KC Sporting Samaritan nominator Michael Szymanski. “Alexandra without a doubt helps enrich the lives of all of her students.”
In addition to her work with students, Paulson also has served as a resource for the families of her students and has received recognition by parents for her ability to enhance the quality of life of their children.
“I give my students a fresh start every day,” said Paulson. “It’s really important to me that my students don’t look at their mistakes as who they are but look at the future as an opportunity to find happiness and success. Life can throw you twists and turns, and that’s okay. I make it my job to help my students navigate them. I work with some of the most resilient students in the world, and I love going to my job so much every day that it doesn’t feel like work.”
With Blue KC Sporting Samaritans being honored monthly at Children’s Mercy Park during Sporting home games, fans are encouraged to nominate students and teachers like Paulson who are making a positive impact on their schools and in their communities. To nominate, visit https://www.sportingkc.com/bluekc.