April Sawey, Ph.D.

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“We are on stage every day,” she says, “which is why I’m eternally grateful to my high school theater arts teacher!” Not what you’d expect from the Academy’s Lower School and 5th Grade Science Specialist, but you seldom get what you’d expect from April Sawey, Ph.D.
Dr. Sawey received her BS in Biology with a minor in theater arts from Texas Wesleyan University, MEd in Curriculum and Instruction from Texas Wesleyan University and Ph.D. in Science Education and Environmental Science from Texas Christian University. In addition to her personal academic credentials, Dr. Sawey has taught 7th and 8th grade science, served as an Academic Dean at Rio Vista High School, been a graduate research assistant at TCU, and a Research and Evaluation Specialist at the Botanical Research Institute of Texas.
Since we’re talking science, we thought it might be fun to embark on our own scientific study of Dr. Sawey; here’s what we learned:
Us: What do you enjoy most about your role here at Fort Worth Academy?
Dr. Sawey: There is a famous quote that education should be the light of a spark and not the filling of a bucket. This is certainly the case in science! Knowing that I am potentially lighting a spark every single day I come to work is by far and away the very best part of my job.
Us: What you do is important. Why?
Dr. Sawey: Look around in today’s world. Our society does not trust science because they do not trust it as a discipline. People get frustrated when the body of knowledge that is science changes – and yet that is what it is supposed to do! At the Academy we are preparing students for global citizenship that requires a deep understanding of foundational science.
Us: Why did you choose this profession? What was your inspiration?
Dr. Sawey: I did not choose teaching – teaching chose me. I was always a teacher. I was always teaching someone something. It did not matter if it was my lunch, my Halloween candy, or knowledge that I wanted them to have, too!
Us: Who do you admire most and why?
Dr. Sawey: I admire my struggling students. School was never very hard for me. I admire the students I have for whom it is NOT easy every day. I admire their perseverance and grit.
Us: What resources or opportunities do you have here that you would not have elsewhere?
Dr. Sawey: A Professional Learning Community of like-minded and equally talented professionals with whom to practice my craft. Teachers at the Academy have the unique opportunity to reach their full potential as professionals because they are respected for the expertise they bring to the table. If you are hired you can be trusted to bring the knowledge and skills needed to do the expected, and phenomenal, job of guiding your students through the learning process. That’s why the hiring process here is rigorous and why it has been compared to that of the FBI or the CIA!

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