Rabun Gap Stories

Faculty Profile: Kate Walters, Director of Learning Support Services

Ms. Kate Walters is our Director of Learning Support Services and joined the faculty in 2020.  She holds a degree in Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Asheville and an advanced Orton-Gillingham certification from the Key Learning Center in Asheville.

What made you choose to work at Rabun Gap?
I was intrigued to see the incredible global diversity of the Upper School student body and the opportunity to surround myself and my family with students and faculty from around the world.
What did you do before coming to Rabun Gap?
I worked as a learning specialist for 15 years and focused on students with language-based learning differences. I also worked for several years as a documentary photographer. 
What makes Rabun Gap special to you?
I have found that students and teachers here have a deep appreciation for being members of this community and this means that everyone invests more of themselves into their education, friendships, and activities. 
What do you like most about working with our students?
Meeting students from countries that I’ve only read about brings the world to life in new and tangible ways.  I love hearing multiple languages spoken in the classrooms, stages, athletic fields, or dorms.  It’s encouraging to see students go out of their way to help and support one another and to be receptive to new ideas.
Why did you decide to become a teacher?
I was born at a boarding school and teaching seems to be in my genes.  My parents and my husband’s parents are lifelong educators and from a young age, I saw their joy and fulfillment in supporting others.  I started tutoring while I attended college and once I saw content “click” in new ways for my students, I discovered a passion for nurturing those innate gifts and abilities. Supporting students who struggle with reading and writing is especially fulfilling as this allows them to interact with the world in vital ways on a daily basis. 
What is your teaching philosophy? 
I believe that all students are capable of growth when they feel safe and valued within a trusting learning community.  Carving out intentional time for metacognition allows students to process, retain, and appreciate new information and the active process of learning. 
What is it like working at the same school that your children attend?
I’m so grateful to know and work alongside my children’s excellent teachers.  I love walking to school with them and hearing their stories from the day.  It is also a unique gift to know so many of their friends in different school settings. I believe they have a deeper appreciation for the energy their teachers pour into this community as well. 
What were you like in high school?
I was incredibly introverted and quiet in the classroom but enjoyed singing in our high school band.  I loved being behind the lens as a photographer for our yearbook and journalism class.
What is your favorite memory from the time you have worked here so far?
I loved joining Mrs. Buice as a leader of the Outdoor Program last spring.  One afternoon during a hike around campus, several students paused on the trail for a water break and started sharing appreciation for nature and one another.  I was grateful for the intentional moment to soak in the beauty of these mountains and to listen to the gratitude these students hold for these opportunities too. 
What’s the most interesting thing about you that we wouldn’t learn from your resume alone?
I love music and can play nearly any song on the piano by ear (and I wish that I could learn to read sheet music).
Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School is a private, coeducational day and boarding school for grades Pre-K through 12. Centrally located between Atlanta, GA, Greenville, SC, and Asheville, NC, we prepare young people for college, career, and a lifetime of leadership and service.