Helping Students Graduate

My son was failing many of his classes, he needed extra help and we were not getting any where with the public school system.  I kept telling the counselor I was concerned about him as he is very intelligent.  He lacked focus and had a very hard time with essays and or other writing assignments. She helped him a lot!  With her help I was able to figure out that he should be tested for Autism.  I had him tested and my concerns were confirmed he has ASD. He was able to pass all his classes and was able to graduate with his class.  – a parent

Helping Young Writers

We set up lessons for our son with Mrs. Norris because he was interested in developing skills as a writer. Our son loves stories and we saw that Mrs. Norris was able to gently help coach and guide him in the process of turning his ideas into stories. We appreciate Mrs. Norris’ ability to both challenge and encourage our student in the writing process. He comes away from his time with Mrs. Norris excited and ready to write. Our son has grown as a writer and is better equipped to turn ideas into stories. We appreciate Mrs. Norris’ flexibility and readiness to meet our son where he is at and help him further develop as a writer. – a parent

Mrs. Norris taught my son and daughter English for several years when they attended a classical school. When my daughter transitioned to homeschooling, Mrs. Norris was readily available and worked closely with my daughter and me to make an engaging and robust curriculum. Her weekly English lessons have been instrumental in helping my daughter grow as a writer and an analytical thinker. I could not have asked for a more organized, responsive, and excellent teacher than Mrs. Norris for my daughter. – Susan Lim

Our son was a strong reader, but not such a strong writer. He was very factual and organized. Mrs. Norris helped him to find his creative side through writing. He was not initially a fan of English and overall in-depth writing, but she provided the nudge needed for his growth. We found that with her gentle, encouraging yet challenging spirit as a skilled educator, our son found how to dig deeper and over a short time period became a stronger writer. Our son is now a freshman in high school and flourishing in honors English and headed into his second year of honors English as a soon-to-be sophomore! – Sara A.

Helping with Challenging Classes

Because our public school was skipping a lot of basic English instruction to teach social issues, my son enrolled in PSEO English Composition. We knew he was not well prepared, so we had him meet with Mrs. Norris for tutoring from the beginning. Mrs. Norris was able to  help fill in the gaps and help my son with grammar, writing and other assignments in his PSEO course. My son went from barely being able to compose a sentence on his own, to writing college level papers, getting A’s and B’s. He went from not knowing the difference between two, to and too, to  passing a difficult comprehensive grammar test. My son was very comfortable working with Mrs. Norris.  Having another adult working on homework assignments has created a bit more peace in our relationship as well! We feel like he has made great progress and are much more hopeful for his academic success. We likely will continue working with her with difficult classes in the future.  – a parent

From Former Colleagues

Ellen embodies every practice of good teaching: Compassion, empathy, high standards, creativity, pointed instruction, and a servant’s heart. Teaching with Ellen taught me as a colleague as much as it taught her students. She balances practical and diverse instruction with genuine love for her students and her craft; students leave better and wiser because of her. – Abby Panabaker, former colleague and English teacher

In the two years that I worked with Mrs. Norris I found her to be a well-prepared, knowledgeable, and compassionate yet firm educator. She was always willing to meet with students one-on-one for extra help if needed and consistently went out of her way to ensure student mastery of subjects. She was, and I have no doubt continues to be, a strong teacher. – Jeff Button, former K-12 Director