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"I’m so proud": Former bus driver turned elementary school teacher recognized for successful first year

Raven Henry
Posted at 8:15 AM, May 28, 2024

INDIANAPOLIS — A teacher at Lakeside Elementary was named MSD Warren Township District Elementary New Teacher of the Year.

That person is Raven Henry.

WRTV first introduced you to Henry a year ago.

WATCH | Meet Raven Henry

Bus driver turned elementary school teacher proves it's never too late to follow your dreams

She graduated from Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) with a degree in elementary education last May.

Fast forward to today, she teaches fourth grade on Indy’s east side.

“You can never prepare for teaching. No. It was a whole different curve ball," Henry said.

Henry’s path was an nontraditional one.

After over a decade of being a bus driver, she decided to pursue her dream of becoming a teacher.

Something Director of Transportation Lynn Storm says took a lot of tenacity.

“The girl was coming in, driving a bus from 5:30 a.m. until 9, and then coming over to Lakeside or going to the other schools to student teach," Storm said. "She was taking all of her classes in the middle of the day. Coming back to drive a bus at 2 until 5 and then going back to school in the evenings."

Storm hired Henry as bus monitor in 2011.

Caring, compassionate and vibrant — all words she’d use to describe Henry.

“I’ve never seen that girl in a bad mood. I’ve never seen her give up on anything," Storm said.

The district honored Henry at a ceremony earlier this month.

She says she came into her first year of teaching wanting to put her best foot forward and she’s excited to continue to grow next fall.

“I know I got a little tweaks to make in terms of class management and as far as planning more. But other than that, stay the course. It worked for me. My kids did great. They grew so much this year, I’m so proud of them. I’m proud of me," Henry said.

Classes wrapped up for Warren Township last week but that doesn’t mean Henry is out of the classroom.

She tells me she’ll spend the next few months teaching summer school.