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Teachers Transition to New Positions

Kim Duffy and Judy Keklik got the opportunity this year to turn their long-term substitute positions at Easton's Samuel Staples Elementary into full-time gigs.

"Not only was it close by to where I live, I'm from Trumbull, but they have an excellent school system," said Keklik, who landed a spot in the third grade after two years of filling in for that age. She went to college for marketing. But "after I had my children I realized I loved children and being around children. So then I went back to school," Keklik said.

But Duffy said becoming a teacher had always been her goal. "Everyone tried to talk me out of it, so I actually went to school to be an accountant. They said, 'don't be a teacher, there are no jobs.' ... I went to school for a year and a half as an accounting major and then thought, 'This is not what I can do for the rest of my life,'" said the fourth-grade teacher, who worked in other towns before taking a break to have her own kids.

"Two years ago, I decided I wanted to get back into the classroom. My children had grown up, and I decided it was time, so I ended up getting a long-term sub position here for a woman who went out who was pregnant," said Duffy.

Both chose elementary education for the age group and the range of subjects. "I know if a child is off to a good start, it sets the tone for the rest of their lives. If they enjoy learning when they're younger, it's going to give them confidence," said Keklik.

Both said they feel fortunate to have found homes at Staples. "There are a lot of teachers looking for jobs, and I feel blessed that I was chosen to take this position," said Duffy.

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