Art department welcomes new teacher


Photo Credit: Isis Kirkland

The newest photography teacher, Jenna Dunay poses with her two favorite cameras.

by Isis Kirkland, Staff Writer

Jenna Dunay, who was a teacher’s aide in the district four years ago, rejoined the high school’s faculty as an art teacher this year. She teaches digital photography, drawing, and painting courses.

Prior to her return, she taught art classes to 800 students, ranging from pre-kindergarteners to eighth graders, a week.

“I’ve been a free-thinking artist since I was really young,” Dunay said.

Dunay has always dreamed of becoming a teacher, and she loves the school atmosphere because she can form personal connections with the students.

“I’ve never had a bad day teaching. Every day is different. The kids are funny. You laugh every single day,” she said.

Her colleagues and students find her passion and fun-loving spirit admirable, and they enjoy her class.

“She’s a wonderful addition to the art wing,” Mara Siegel, a fellow art teacher, said. “She’s very energetic, very positive, has lots of new ideas, and tries to push kids to make artwork. I think it’s wonderful.”

Ashley Robinson (’19) described Dunay as “a really good teacher who gets us thinking about what we should take pictures of and certain aspects to look for in a photo.”

This is Dunay’s first year as a L.E.A.P (Leadership, Encouraging, Alternatives, Positivity) adviser.

The L.E.A.P club holds events to encourage teens to live a drug-free, substance-free, alcohol-free and tobacco-free life. Dunay says the program encourages students to be themselves because students “have a natural high and don’t need to take part in substances to be somebody else.”

Four years ago, she worked with special education students in Glen Rock, and then she started working with families with disabilities outside of school.

Dunay worked as an Applied Behavior Therapist for four years, and she visited people’s homes to teach children with severe special needs of all ages to perform in a mainstream classroom setting.

“I personally love working with the special needs population. I believe it might be a growing population, and more people need to get involved with them. It’s fun, it doesn’t feel like work and it’s important. It makes you feel good and that’s the bottom line,” Dunay said.