PHS’s Jensen named Deputy Director of the Year for Region 16

By John Lee | [email protected] | Twitter: @jcl1987

Pampa High School will now have a familiar face depicted in the halls of the Region 16 Education Resource Center in Amarillo.

Assistant Principal Michelle Jensen was named Assistant Principal of the Year for Region 16 and said the honor was not earned by her alone.

“I was excited and honored,” Jensen said. “I’m super proud. It is not a reward for one person. I can’t do my job without the team we have here. It’s just Mr. (Clay) Jones and me alone this year. Obviously, he’s just as worthy as I am. It’s teamwork.

Jensen highlighted the various department heads and secretaries who helped make the 2021-22 school year a success.

Jensen will enter his 10th year in teaching in 2022-23, having spent all nine years at Pampa. She began her career as an English teacher and even an assistant basketball coach, until health issues led her to stop coaching.

“I’m a dialysis patient because I’m in end-stage kidney disease,” Jensen said. “It’s an interesting situation, you might say, but I try not to let it get in the way of my doing my job. It takes a bit of planning, organization and anticipation. We make it work though.

Jensen feels lucky it’s a matter she can handle at home and said she was on the transplant list.

Jensen is in her second year as vice principal at Pampa High School.

In a past life, Jensen served as a banking officer at First United Bank for eight years in Canyon while attending college.

“I haven’t had that many jobs,” Jensen said. “I worked at the YMCA of Colorado Springs as an administrative coordinator for, I think, eight years. Then I taught a little preschool for about a year before going to the bank for about eight years. J tend to stay.

After earning her Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in English (She also earned her primary certification from Lamar University in 2020.), Jensen made the decision to teach and got a job at Pampa in 2014.

“We took the step and we’ve never worried about it since,” Jensen said. “It’s the best decision I’ve ever made. We love the city, we love the people. It’s great for my kids. »

Besides being a good place to raise a family, Jensen said Pampa is a great place to work in education because of the community support.

“I love going to the store and seeing people I know or the kids at their work,” Jensen said. “I like that it allows us to network quickly so we can help students better. If I know the person who owns Flipz and a student who is a good student and needs a job, it’s more easy to network and help kids with internships, jobs and referrals.

“Here, people know the children or the parents. People are very generous with time, money and most of the time, if we say a need, the community provides it.

Then Jensen has some work to do to advance to the next round of Deputy Principal of the Year.

Jensen has three children, Rhys, Sean and Abby. Rhys recently graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington, Sean attends Friends University in Wichita, Kan. and Abby is graduating from Pampa High School this year and will attend West Texas A&M University next year.

As for his hobbies, Jensen enjoys reading and writing, spending time with his family, his dogs, and his friend Lisa Mitchell. She loves to travel, but with dialysis, logistics can complicate things.

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