May TOTM – Ms. OJ

by Michaya Victor

Ms. Keeba (OJ) Oglesby-Jelks, the May teacher of the month, is an inspiring educator. She is full of love for her family, her coworkers, and her students; she also possesses a great love for learning. Ms. Oglesby-Jelks wishes to share with her students this love for learning through her teaching in Multicultural Literature and the Yearbook Class. 

Since childhood, Ms. Oglesby-Jelks has loved reading. She recalls reading with her grandparents. Ms. Oglesby-Jelks enjoys getting lost in books and immersing herself in the new worlds they offer; today, she shares this experience with her students. 

As a student, Ms. Oglesby-Jelks was very involved. She participated in track, student council, dance, and chorus. She also has a background in music and dance, as she attended the school now called Dekalb School of the Arts (DSA).

Ms. Oglesby-Jelks has been teaching at Tucker High School for two years, and has twenty years of experience in education. She started her journey by volunteering at her daughter’s school. One thing led to another, and she ended up going back to school to pursue her passion for teaching and the English language. 

Although teaching can be stressful and frustrating at times, Ms. Oglesby-Jelks enjoys the product of her teaching. As she sees it, all that stress and hard work pays off; her students are successful in whatever they choose to do. Ms. Oglesby-Jelks also enjoys leaving her classes with a better understanding of themselves and how they can make a difference in the world around them. 

Ms. Oglesby-Jelks wants her students to thrive in the world that awaits them outside the classroom. Her favorite part about teaching is seeing the lightbulb turn on inside her students' minds, and she enjoys seeing her students' different personalities interacting and complimenting each other. Ms. Oglesby-Jelks takes pleasure in seeing the creativity of her students nurtured and developed. She wants her students to feel free to express themselves creatively and discover their full potential. 

One of the things that Ms. Oglesby-Jelks wants to teach her students is the ability to “speak as you write” not to “write as you speak.” She wants her students to find their voices as writers and to gain a deeper understanding of themselves and their thoughts. 

When she is not teaching, you may find Ms. Oglesby-Jelks spending time with her family or friends. She enjoys music, being active, reading, and traveling. Ms. Oglesby-Jelks has been to many places such as Florida, Washington D.C., Vegas, Mexico, and the Bahamas.