Wednesday Worker of the Week: Dustin Shields

Wednesday Worker of the Week: Dustin Shields - 12.16.20
Posted on 12/16/2020
worker of the week

Dustin (Dusty) Shields 

Math Teacher, Rome Free Academy 


How long have you worked in the RCSD?

Over the course of my 37 years in education, 25 years have been in Rome schools, spending time at Staley and Strough, and for the most part, at RFA. 


What do you like most about your job?
I have always loved to work! Having worked through many of Rome’s ups and downs, I have endured numerous changes that could have sent even the most persistent worker out the door. While it is wonderful working with quality, skilled teachers and administrators, who are built around doing the best for kids, nothing surpasses the feeling an educator gets when a past student comes back with praise of your efforts. 


I love all the people at RFA. I look forward to arriving early every day and have always enjoyed seeing people in the lobby, readying themselves for what the day has to offer. I value all of these relationships, but most important, is building relationships with the kids. Building these special bonds are challenging but represent the groundwork to winning a student's trust, which is what I feel is the key to opening their eyes and heart to learning. 


What Inspires you?

My inspiration comes from seeing kids develop into better human beings. Not so much whether they leave as better math students, rather, that they leave RFA as better people, who are adequately equipped with tools that allow them to become better people in their communities. 


What is a fun fact about you?

Many people have asked me, “why did you become a math teacher?” I started my working life as a carpenter. It didn't take long for me to learn that pounding nails in upstate New York through the winter months was not what I really enjoyed about carpentry. Struggling to find a job with my public relations degree, I started working in the school district as a tutor. Months later, I went to BOCES and asked, "what is the quickest way for me to become a teacher?" The specialist said Math would be your fastest avenue. Math it was! I am still a carpenter! Jesus was a teacher and a carpenter! guess I could have chosen worse mentors.

Dusty Shields



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