ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Wednesday was the first day back to school for most students in Rochester.
While back-to-school is all about the students, what makes their experience so memorable is often time the teachers. But what about three generations of teachers all working in the same district? The Rochester City School District offers just that.
After graduating from RCSD, Zanayia Hercules said she never expected to come back, let alone come back as a teacher. Now, she’s following in her mother and grandmother’s footsteps as an incoming music teacher at Helen Barrett Montgomery School No. 50.
“I really look up to them,” Hercules said. “My mom is so great and my grandmother too. They’re the kind of teachers that are not worried about the fear, they’re not worried about where students come from, they’re here to just love them and support them.”
Zanayia’s grandmother Sharon Leonard has been a substitute teacher the district for years and her mother, Latrice George is a paraprofessional who has been with RCSD for over 24 years.
“I’m glad she followed in the family’s footsteps,” George said. “My mom’s a teacher, then I’m a paraprofessional. And actually, she inspired me to go back to school. I’m just proud of her. And I know she’s going to be a wonderful teacher.”
Zanayia said having three generations of women all working in the same field, in the same city, and the same school district is the full circle moment she never knew she needed.
“It just makes me proud that I can also give back to the district as they did as well,” Hercules said.
Zanayia graduated from Buffalo State College this past spring and graduated from the very school she is teaching at back in 2018.