EAST HANOVER, N.J. - For the 2017-2018 school year, East Hanover hired about twenty new teachers for their schools. Mrs. Sara Legaspi is the new fourth grade teacher for Central Elementary School. After searching online for some time for a teaching job, a friend of hers shared the listing for the teaching position at Central.

She started teaching back in 2007 at a catholic school in South Bronx, where she taught all subjects in the second grade. “From there I spent nearly a decade in Hillsdale public schools,” where she taught all subjects in the fourth grade.

She first went to the University of Scranton where she majored in Elementary Education. Afterwards, she attended Marygrove College where she received her Masters in The Art of Teaching. According to Marygrove’s website, this is a degree that “provides teachers with the opportunity to link the latest developments in educational research to their own teaching practice. The program is designed to empower teachers by focusing on the knowledge and skills required to deliver effective instruction to diverse learners from preschool through high school, including those with special needs.”

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Mrs. Legaspi admitted there were two reasons why she wanted to become a teacher. One was her mom. “She has such a love for children and I believe I adopted that same love even as a child myself.”

The other reason was a camp counselor she had when she was in elementary school. She said, “She was vivacious and full of love for teaching children. Her personality was magnetic and I knew from a very young age that I wanted to make children feel how she made me feel. She showed so much love for the children around her and had a contagious laugh that brought happiness and excitement to those that heard it.”

She went on to tell a story about fate, “Unbeknownst to me, when I began teaching in Hillsdale nearly ten years ago, I walked into the office on my first day in August. Nervous, and carrying boxes of supplies, I said good morning to the secretary. It was then, nearly twenty-five years later, that I heard that familiar laugh only feet away. I looked over to find this camp counselor at the next desk over. I hadn’t seen her in decades and it turned out, she was a teacher in Hillsdale for nearly twenty years at the time…I went on to teach with her, my idol, for nearly ten years.”

When she is not teaching she’s is spending time with her family. Her and her husband, Dr. Owen Legaspi (who has his own physical therapy practice in Livingston) have two kids. They have a daughter, Serafina, who is two, and a son, Noah, who is almost one. She also watches movies like “Top Gun” and sports like basketball.  She loves her job as she said, “Central has been a wonderful place from day one.”