Till next year

Teachers Alisha Hensley and Brad Barry reflect on 2020-2021 school year

With the conclusion of the 2020-2021 school year, “The Hawk Eye” reached out to two teachers to reflect on the year and its challenges and accomplishments.

Alisha Hensley

Aquatic Science teacher Alisha Hensley (Sarosh Ismail)

Aquatic Science teacher Alishia Hensley began her first year teaching at Hebron behind a screen full of turned off cameras and microphones. Despite initial obstacles, Hensley said she was able to overcome hardships thanks to support from administration and colleagues.

“I don’t think this year was more difficult than others thanks to the structure and training which took place early on in the semester,” Hensley said. “I was also part of support groups for teachers, such as [Hebron’s] “New to Campus” group, which helped make sure [I] was informed on policies and procedures through constant check-ups.”

Hensley said she was glad the school enforced COVID-19 protocols, but felt like desk-shields and social distancing limited student’s willingness to respond to questions and communicate with her. She said trying to find a way around this was difficult, but she managed to after a few months.

“I started doing a “thumbs-up” approach,” Hensley said. “If I wanted to [ensure] students understood a [concept], or if I wanted to make sure they were fine with me moving on, I would ask for a thumbs-up or thumbs-down. I was also able to [get students to use their iPads to] airplay presentations, which improved [interaction].

Hensley said this year was a memorable one, but she believes next year will be better, in part because of several new ideas and activities she plans to implement. 

“[Since] I have never taught [Aquatic Science] before, this year was a lot of adjusting and learning the curriculum [for me],” Hensley said. “Now that I know it very well, I have several ideas on how to improve and adopt more hands-on activities next year.”


Brad Barry

Precalculus and Calculus AB teacher Bradley Barry (Sarosh Ismail)

“This year has been very difficult, probably the hardest year I’ve had as a teacher.”

This single quote summarizes Precalculus and Calculus AB teacher Bradley Barry’s semester. Barry has had to repeatedly transition between in-person and virtual learning due to being quarantined four times.

“I have had to quarantine four times this year,” Barry said. “Three times were because students near me got COVID-19, and once was because I was diagnosed with COVID-19 myself. Having to teach from home disrupted teaching a little bit, but fortunately the classes I teach require students to already be motivated, [so there weren’t many problems].”

Barry said his favorite part about teaching is the students themselves. He said although social distancing and quarantine made it harder to get to know his students in the beginning, smaller class sizes helped him overcome this.

“Because many students are virtual learners, I have had smaller classes which has enabled me to get to know each student a little bit better,” Barry said. “I have enjoyed this because we share a lot of the same sense of humor, and I enjoy being around motivated students.”

In addition to his role as a teacher at Hebron, Barry is a pastor at a local church and owner of another small business. He said it has been difficult to balance between the two lives, but he loves doing it.

“I pastor a church in Lewisville called ‘Legacy Church,’” Barry said. “My wife and I started the church together, and we’re coming up on the fourth anniversary [of the Church] this year. It has been difficult balancing work and the church, [but I’ve made it work.]”