Staunton YMCA employee leaves to teach in the new year

Staunton YMCA employee leaves to teach in the new year
Ashley Cole says she already knows some of her students from past programs. (Source: WHSV)

STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) — A YMCA employee said goodbye to her coworkers Thursday. In the new year, she will be teaching fifth grade.

Ashley Cole is replacing Maegan Hoy at Bessie Weller Elementary School after Hoy died in an ATV accident in October. Cole was previously a teacher, but has been working at the Staunton YMCA for four years.

She says she was hired to start the Summer Learning Loss Prevention Program to help close the achievement gap for students during the summer. She has also helped run a mentoring program.

Cole says she already knows some of her students from past programs.

“We’ve already reached out to each other, and they can’t call me Ashley anymore, they have to call me Ms. Cole, so there’s a little bit of a difference in the role,” Cole said. “But we’re already excited to get to still be with each other, so I’m really looking forward to it.”

She says she is not turning in her YMCA polos yet — she expects she will be back working there in the future.

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