Teacher Angelle DeLaneuville back where she began

Published 12:14 am Saturday, May 21, 2016

In years to come a child may forget what you taught them, but will always remember how you made them feel.

That is a quote that Angelle DeLaneuville lives by. DeLaneuville has been teaching for 21 years, the last six years at her alma mater, St. Joan of Arc in LaPlace.

The sixth and seventh grade English language arts teacher was inspired to teach because of the impact her teachers had on her as a student.

“I wanted to be a teacher here because when I was (at St. Joan of Arc) I had really good teachers,” DeLaneuville said. “They inspired me. When I started college, education wasn’t my major but education seemed like a calling. I just knew that’s where I was going to end up. So, I changed my major from criminal justice to social studies education and a minor in English.”

Being able to teach at the school that inspired her means a lot to DeLaneuville.

“Its almost like I’ve come full circle,” she said. “When I first came back, there were a lot of teachers who were still working here that taught me. I got to work with them and thank them. Everyone has a favorite teacher, but sometimes when you’re a kid you don’t think to tell them. I got the chance to come back and say, ‘Hey, you made a difference in my life. Thank you.’”

Getting able to work with students and watch them grow, academically and in age, is DeLaneuville’s favorite part.

She taught the seventh grade class that is about to graduate when they were in fifth grade.

She had them for two classes.

“I got to watch their progression,” DeLaneuville said. “I get to watch them mature, grow psychically, mentally and grow spiritually. They are midway to being adults. It’s just neat to watch that.”

Teachers, in DeLaneuville’s mind, determine whether or not a child learns.

Teachers impact students by what they teach and how they make students feel, the veteran teacher said.

“If you teach them how to add fractions, they might not remember that 20 years from now, but they may remember that you believed in them,” she said.

“Even though (my former students) are in their 30s now, they are still 12 to me,” she said. “A teacher can freeze a kid in time. Even though they may look different and have kids now, I can still remember when they sat in my class and what they did. They like the fact that I remember them, and it’s great to see what they’ve accomplished.”

Because of her hard work and dedication to her students, DeLaneuville was chosen as L’OBSERVATEUR’S Readers Choice Favorite Teacher of the River Parishes.

“I think it’s neat to win the award,” she said.

“The parents are the ones that filled out the form and made sure it got in on time. I really appreciate that. It’s good to know the parents support me. Even though the kids might not always think I’m the nicest teacher, because I might give them detention, the parents know I’m trying to improve them. Parents see that and appreciate that.”

St. Joan of Arc principal Jeffrey Montz said DeLaneuville is a very determined person.

“She very much wants to challenge her students to the level she feels they need to be,” he said. “When you’re a teacher, you have to be true to yourself, and I think that Ms. DeLaneuville does that.”