Middle School counselor Laura Doyle is sadly departing Kingswood Oxford after 18 years. Mrs. Doyle started her tenure at KO when her son, senior Mike Doyle, was nine months old.
“Now that my youngest child is headed off to college in the fall,” she said, “the generation older than me in my family needs my support. I have joked that now that I have raised my kids it is time to raise my parents.”
Initially, Mrs. Doyle was active in both the Middle School and the Upper School as the school counselor, serving a dual position. As school counselor, she helped countless students work through social, academic, and familial problems. She was a comforting presence in many students’ lives and was always there for students to talk to if they were feeling upset or sad. After a few years of working in both the Upper and Middle schools, she sharted to focus on Middle School students and also taught Life Skills to the seventh and eighth-grade students.
At the KO Teacher and Staff Farewell Ceremony, Director of the Middle School Ann Sciglimpaglia shared how Mrs. Doyle has had a deep, positive impact on student life in the Middle School. “A school counselor is vital to the life of a school,” she said. “Behind the school, with little fanfare or acknowledgment, the counselor mediates between friends, talks through tough conversations, listens, and helps to solve problems.”
Ms. Sciglimpaglia praised Mrs. Doyle for her dedication to the students at KO, mentioning that, after 18 years of working with them, Mrs. Doyle knows the ins and outs of the life of a middle schooler. “She can be as goofy or as silly as they are. She simply understands their journey.” Ms. Sciglimpaglia said. “Students line up outside Mrs. Doyle’s door to speak with her during their study halls, and when they enter her room, they are greeted with a smile, a bean bag chair to sit in, and some kind of cool puzzle or toy to play with. There is always loud laughter coming from the inside of her office, and often big smiles by the time the students left,” she said.
Out of the many things at KO that Mrs. Doyle will miss, she said that she will especially miss the relationships she has created. “I will miss the opportunity to create deep, supportive connections with students,” she said, “the ability to watch a student develop from Upper Prep to graduation, and the friendly rapport with colleagues.” She spoke of the many amazing teachers here that practice “the magic of the art of teaching,” and she will be sad to no longer see this performed on a daily basis. Additionally, she will also miss witnessing the benefits that good teaching has on students.
Mrs. Doyle has been a friendly face at KO for almost two decades, and we will be sad to see her leave. We wish her the best in all her future endeavors and thank her for her tireless commitment to KO. Good luck, Mrs. Doyle!