Teacher Spotlight: Bridget Petro

Early College teacher Bridget Petro honored
By: Samantha Solliday
An Early College High School teacher received an extra special birthday surprise Thursday morning when she was honored as the Teacher Spotlight for the Month of September.
Winding down the hallways of the Early College Fort Hood campus, Human Resources and Education Foundation representatives followed the campus administration staff members to the room of 10th grade teacher Bridget Petro’s classroom.Bridget Petro shows her surprise as a crowd fills her room.
Leaning against the cabinets, the teacher hardly moved a muscle and her face was a mix of happiness and surprise as the group entered the classroom cheering her name.
“She is a great teacher,” said Principal Kathleen Burke. “She creates such a wonderful classroom environment for her students.
“Last year she won a $5,000 grant for software for (Texas Success Initiative) prep, and we were so proud of that, so we just want to say that we love you, we appreciate you and we are so glad that you are a Lion.” 
The Pennsylvania native took a chance to come to Texas when her best friend from high school was stationed at Fort Hood.
“This is my second year here and I am so happy,” she said smiling. “I really don’t feel like I am ever coming to work. I just love teaching.”
Petro’s favorite part of teaching is watching her students grow.
“The kids are incredible. They want to meet and fulfill the expectations that you have for them, and they are just so respectful and personable. I love it.”
But watching them grow is a double-edged sword, because Petro knows that once they get out of 10th grade, they will be off to the Early College Central Texas College campus on the next leg of their academic journey.
Petro accepts her certificate from the human resources department.“It’s hard to see them leave because this is not a typical campus where you can see them until they graduate,” she said. “Here, once they go to CTC, you have to say goodbye and that is difficult for me.”
Petro hopes that she can teach her students to not only be strong in academics, but to be good people, and to be good classmates to each other.
“As a teacher, I want to do right by my students. I want to give them the skills they need to pass the TSI and get them in college and be successful in college.”
Thanking the Early College staff and her principal, Petro looks forward to continue prepping her students for the real world.
“Thank you to Mrs. Burke, Mr. (Assistant Principal Joe) Gonzales, the administration here is wonderful and they set a wonderful example for how to be a good teacher.”