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Wasco High celebrates Teacher, Employee of the Year with awards

Wasco High celebrates Teacher, Employee of the Year with awards
Posted at 4:55 PM, Jun 12, 2024

WASCO, Calif. (KERO) — Jennifer Aufforth and Kyna Mecham were recognized as Wasco High School's Teacher and Employee of the Year awards, respectively.

  • Aufforth and Mecham have worked for Wasco High School for nearly two decades a piece, and both noted they're still grateful to still be guiding Wasco's next generation through the halls of the school.
  • 23ABC spoke with Mecham and Aufforth about their tenure at the school, the highs and lows, but throughout the conversation the conversation kept coming back to one thing: their love for the City of Wasco and the high school.
  • To learn more about Aufforth and Mecham, more complete biographies on the award recipients can be found on the 'Wasco Is'Facebook page.


If you think back, you likely have a teacher or school employee who positively impacted your life. I Sam Hoyle, your Wasco Neighborhood reporter, have a few—Mr. Corbett in fourth grade, Mr. Hynes in high school, and Mark Reda in college.

But this story isn't about me, it's about Jennifer Aufforth and Kyna Mecham, Wasco Union High School's Educator and Employee of the Year, respectively.

Aufforth and Mecham have been at the school for nearly two decades, helping usher the next generation through the halls of Wasco High, a task they both said they're truly grateful to do nearly two decades later because of the students and staff both past and present.

"This has always been my dream. I was a student here at Wasco High School. This is where I fell in love with literature and English. This is where I learned that I wanted to teach it myself. I never wanted to work anywhere else but here," said Aufforth.

"We have great kids here on campus, our kids are so good. That, I think, is because our staff is so good. The love comes through our staff to our kids and I think that's why our kids are so good," said Mecham.

Across their tenures, both Aufforth and Mecham noted they have plenty of moments that stick out to them, but for one there's a recurring theme, and the other an experience of a lifetime that she kept secret.

"I just received a text from one of my former students who wants to be a teacher and she's working towards that. I just responded to that about an hour ago," said Aufforth. "It happens more often than you'd think and I think that's because we are in Wasco, this beautiful small town."

"2012 we are hosting the Wasco Shafter football game, I got to dress up in Tilly the mascot costume, flew in a helicopter, we landed on the football field pre-game, I got to hand Coach [Rusvel] Prado the game ball, got back in the helicopter, flew off as I'm waving at people as they're going, 'Who is that?' People didn't know for the longest time, we kept it a secret."

Now, we had a wonderful conversation with these two people and this story just scratches the surface, but the overarching theme that came from those conversations was these two love, Wasco, just as much as this place seems to love them.

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