Retired city educator teaching new lessons at GiftsToGive!

Martha Kay and two student volunteers

Martha Kay
and student volunteers

Every once in a while something happens that fuels change. That something, for us, is Martha Kay.

It’s one thing to facilitate thousands of children in community service, it’s another to connect them to service learning and then to something much bigger than themselves.

Some people talk the talk, others walk the walk, Martha does them both – every single day! Thousands of student’s lives are better for what they learned on her watch over 38 years as a New Bedford Educator and in her retirement Martha is continuing to connect thousands of children to a pathway for a better life. Rather than have us talk about her – we’ll defer to the Standard Times and the YWCA. Here is what the Standard Times had to say about Ms. Kay.

Here is an excerpt of what the YWCA said about Martha when they honored her as a “Woman of DistinctionMartha Kay is the mother of two sons and works as the Director of Early Literacy and Educational Programming for GiftsToGive (probono),  a children’s charity which serves the South Coast of Massachusetts.  She began her work at the charity upon her retirement from the New Bedford Public Schools where she was both a teacher and an administrator for almost four decades.

Her career began as a Portuguese and Spanish bi-lingual teacher after graduating from Southeastern Massachusetts University where she also earned her M.ED in Bilingual/Bicultural Education. In 1984 she was asked to become the administrator of the Title VII Preschool Program, working with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Bilingual Education and Language Minorities Affairs. Her program was subsequently awarded the Massachusetts Academics in Excellence for Bilingual Programs.

During the administration of the Title VII program, Ms. Kay also became the Assistant Principal of Hayden McFadden Elementary School. While in these positions, she developed the Ingraham Integrated Preschool which opened under her direction in 1992 and later became the first local public school to attain NAEYC accreditation. Thirteen years later the preschool was moved to and became part of the Alfred J. Gomes Elementary School.  For five years Ms. Kay served as Principal of this newly expanded educational facility while also directing her newly awarded, federal-funded grant – the highly competitive Early Reading First Program.

Although retired, Ms. Kay continues to be active in community education and service. Her memberships include: the Delta Kappa Gamma Society– ETA chapter, the Board of Trustees of Alma del Mar Public Charter School, the Board of Trustees of The Gentlemen’s Round Table and the SouthCoast Board of Directors of GiftsToGive.”

We’re known by the company we keep. We’re so very proud to have Martha driving our Leadership Team! She inspires us to be better and to do more.

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