The saying "like mother, like daughter" could easily be applied to Cindy Beaty and her daughter Misty Christiansen.
Beaty left her position as media specialist at North Columbia Elementary School to go to the new Lewiston Elementary School this year. Stocking the shelves at her former library will be her daughter Misty Christiansen, a former teacher at Stevens Creek Elementary School.
Since the two bear such a physical resemblance, the change should be a seamless one for pupils.
Christiansen said she was enticed to become a media specialist after years of hearing how much her mother enjoyed her job.
"I was always hearing about what fun the media center is," Christiansen said.
Beaty chimes in, "It's the best job in the whole school."
Cindy Beatty will leave the media center at North Columbia Elementary School to tackle the same job at the new Lewiston Elementary School. Pupils at North Columbia will see another familiar face in that job- Beatty's daughter, Misty Christiansen will fill her mother's shoes.
Photo by Jim Blaylock
Christiansen, 29, has taught in Columbia County for four years, two at Martinez Elementary School and two at Stevens Creek. She will be completing her master's degree this December.
"I knew I wanted to get my master's degree, but I wanted to do something that would let me be close to the kids, not in administration," Christiansen said.
As media specialist at North Columbia, she will inherit her mother's extensive collection of dragons.
"Now I'll have to start collecting lions," Beaty said, referring to Lewiston Elementary's mascot.
Though she has taught kindergarten through second grade, Christiansen said she is looking forward to working with a wide range of children, especially the younger ones.
Christiansen has been bringing her supplies and perusing the school's 10,000-book collection before the upcoming school year.
"Hopefully, it was left in good shape. If not, I'll be making some phone calls," she said, poking fun at her mother.
Beaty said being able to start a school library from scratch is a media specialist's dream, an offer too good to pass up. After all, she's spent the past three years at North Columbia culling out old books that were left over from Phinizy and Appling schools. When the school year begins Aug. 6, she'll have 5,300 all-new books on her shelves.
A 16-year veteran of education, Beaty has been a media specialist for the past four years, all of them at North Columbia.
But it wasn't just a matter of handing over the library keys to her daughter. North Columbia Principal Kay Sanders said Christiansen went through a structured process to land the job. A committee formed to pick a new media specialist interviewed 15 candidates, she said.
"She won that position for herself fair and square," Sanders said. "She convinced everybody that she would have the energy, as well as the kindness a media specialist needs. She had just a little something for everybody. "
The hardest part, Christiansen said, will be leaving her teacher ways behind.
"That teacher in me still wants to do a lot of planned activities with the kids. I'm not ready to give up the teacher side," she said.
"The good part is you never have to," Beaty told her.
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