Forks New Alternative School Teacher Transforms Classroom, Creates Safe & Welcoming Environment & Brings Innovation and Compassion to Inspire Student Success!

Mrs. Whitehead is a remarkable individual who has been an integral part of the Forks community for several decades. Mrs. Whitehead moved to Forks in 1978 and has since established deep roots in the area. She attended school from 7th grade to 12th grade proudly graduating from Forks High School.

Mrs. Whitehead’s passion for education led her to a fulfilling career as an elementary school teacher where she dedicated 18 years to nurturing young minds and fostering a love for learning. She not only excelled in the classroom, but also took on additional responsibilities as the elementary school MTSS (Multi-Tiered Systems of Support) coordinator and highly capable coordinator ensuring that every student received the support they needed to reach their full potential.

Outside of her professional life, Judi cherishes her role as a parent to three wonderful children, two girls & one boy all of whom graduated from Forks High School. She is now a proud grandmother to three grandchildren two girls and one boy who bring immense joy to her.

In her spare time, Judi indulges in her passion for arts & crafts utilizing her creativity to bring beautiful creations to life. Additionally, she is actively involved in the community, particularly in her role as a hobbyist working with various breeds of poultry.

Mrs. Whitehead’s commitment to education, her unwavering dedication to her community and her enthusiasm for creative pursuits make her an exceptional individual who continues to positively impact those around her.

Since joining Forks Alternative School at the beginning of the 2023/24 academic year, Mrs. Judi Whitehead has brought a fresh perspective to the classroom incorporating alternative teaching methods that cater to the diverse learning styles and needs of her students. One of the key aspects of Mrs. Whitehead’s success lies in her ability to create a safe and welcoming environment for her students. Recognizing the importance of emotional well-being in the learning process she has implemented various strategies to foster a positive classroom (college feel) atmosphere.

“I believe when students feel safe and supported they are more likely to take risks, ask questions, and engage in the learning process”, said Mrs. Whitehead. “Creating a welcoming environment where students can be themselves is crucial to their academic and personal growth.”

Mrs. Whitehead provides each student with a personalized written student learning plan (WSLP) that is monitored & tailored to their learning style and it supports and accommodates their needs both during and outside the school day.

Mrs. Whitehead has 70% of her student’s parents connected to ClassDojo, a digital sharing platform that allows her to document the day in class, work with students remotely, provide activities for students, deal out classwork, share lessons, and most importantly, it allows parents and the teacher to communicate & message directly. Her students also have the opportunity to earn Dojo Points based on their conduct & academic progress. Students receive one ticket for every 25 points received. The tickets are used to draw for prizes each term and semester. Prizes include BT headset, BT earbuds, mystery gifts, mocha cards, subway certificates and the end of semester 2 the big draw for an Oculus Meta 2 VR.

Mrs. Whitehead’s goal is to offer more STEM & project-based activities & increase community partnerships that will support the student’s skill, career pathway or college pathway.

In addition to all the learning opportunities, Mrs. Whitehead is incorporating a virtual reality classroom setting through VR RobotLAB. Without leaving the classroom she can take students on over 700 virtual reality field trips. Students will be able to explore new places like museums, underwater, famous monuments, outer space & more.

The impact of Mrs. Whitehead’s efforts can be seen in the transformation of her students. Several students who were previously disengaged or struggling academically have shown significant improvement under her guidance. Their confidence has soared and their passion for learning has been reignited.

As Principal of the Alternative school, I express my admiration for Mrs. Whitehead’s impact on the school community. Mrs. Whitehead has brought a breath of fresh air to Forks Alternative School. Her dedication, creativity, and genuine care for her students have made a remarkable difference in such a short period. We are fortunate to have her as part of our team.

With her unwavering commitment to creating a safe and welcoming environment, Mrs. Whitehead serves as a shining example of the positive impact educators can have on their students’ lives. Her story is a reminder of the profound influence teachers hold and the potential for change within our education system

Cindy M. Feasel

Forks Alternative School Principal