NPHS teacher is DeVoe-ted

Art teacher committed to children in and out of school

Priscila Mondragõn, Managing Editor

Most high school students think that their teachers only lecture and grade papers, but that’s not what North Platte High School Art teacher Joy DeVoe does. 

For a short period of time in 2020, DeVoe and her husband fostered a child. “It wasn’t something that we had planned on or signed up for anything like that just kind of fell into place,” she said. “We were just kind of a temporary place for her.” 

During her time as a teacher and wife, DeVoe has put time into helping the people around her. Now, she will be adding another person to her list of teaching. “I have let the news out that I’m pregnant and will be due in July,” DeVoe said. 

Joy DeVoe demonstrates how to create a pinch pot for her art class. (Priscila Mondragon)

When she’s not teaching or taking care of her family Devoe is working at the North Platte Recreation Center. She has worked at the Rec Center since before she became a teacher. “It’s a really nice kind of flexible job. So it’s fun, and I love the people that I work with,” she said. “It’s something where I can work one day a week, if that’s what I need, or in the summer, I can work more.”

From weekdays to weekends DeVoe fills her day with different tasks and responsibilities. She teaches six different art subjects at NPHS throughout one school year. “I teach drawing one and two, painting one and two, art history, and textiles,” DeVoe said.

DeVoe has been teaching art for the past eight years, seven of them at NPHS. “I knew I wanted to teach art because it came natural to me…and I spent all my time in the art room in high school,” DeVoe said.

Being an art teacher allows DeVoe to learn and grow more as a person. “I like to see how everybody kind of brings something different to the table,” she said. “I learned a lot from my students and I think that it kind of keeps me on my toes as well.”

Sophomore Josephina Erb enjoys being around her art teachers. “Our teachers are really helpful with bouncing our ideas and helping us be more creative,” Erb said. 

After school, DeVoe spends her time sponsoring the NPHS Art Club. DeVoe has been leading this art club for seven years. “We just tend to do all different stuff; we’ve gone on trips, we’ve gone on field trips in towns, or art centers, different places like that they’ve done community projects, and they’ve done individual projects,” DeVoe said.

 

I love when there’s a kid that comes in and just wants to play and experiment and learn on their own time outside of class”

— Joy DeVoe

Due to Covid-19 the art club has not had the turnout they’ve hoped for. “This year we haven’t been quite as active because a lot of students are doing remote learning,” DeVoe said. 

The club still meets and tries new things. “I love when there’s a kid that comes in and just wants to play and experiment and learn on their own time outside of class,” she said.

Senior Molly Fitzpatrick has been a part of multiple art classes, clubs, and art shows. “I love how it’s a break from class and I just get to be so expressive,” Fitzpatrick said.

Through her years of being a teacher, worker, sponsor, and soon to be mother, DeVoe believes it’s good to look at how you can impact the lives of others. “I think that it’s really important to be introspective,” DeVoe said. “I’m always telling my [students], I think it’s really important to try to try to take advantage of situations that you’re in.”