Cara McCarthy jumps right into the 2022-2023 school year at Westford Academy


Grace Hsu

Cara McCarthy smiles for a picture in the library.

Victoria Farley and Grace Hsu

Teaching Assistant (TA) Cara McCarthy is welcomed to Westford Academy as a first year teacher. The Ghostwriter had the opportunity to sit down with her and ask a few questions. 

Q: How has your experience at WA been so far?

A: So far, everyone’s been really welcoming. I’ve gotten lost quite a few times, but people are very good about showing me where to go. My students are great. They are super nice, and super fun to be with. Overall, I’d say it’s been a really good experience.

Q: What do you like most about WA?

A: I think the kindness that I’ve seen from not only the faculty but especially the students, working in special education, and seeing just how kind and how welcoming the camaraderie between all the students is really something to behold. I feel very welcomed here and I feel really good knowing that my students are also welcome here. 

Q: What do you like most about your job?

A: I’m actually in a master’s program right now to get my Masters in Secondary Education. I think my favorite part about being here is that I’m really getting that experience about working in a school. Learning the ins and outs and also knowing that I have Mrs. Party, the main teacher who I work with, and also anybody else in the school that I can ask questions about being a teacher, so it’s really setting me up for a good future in the end. 

Q: How specifically do you help your students?

A: I’m a one-on-one TA. Specifically, when one of my students has an elective. I go with them to that elective to make sure that they’re staying focused, on task, and also just being there as support for them. When we’re in the classroom, I tend to help them go around if they have any questions, and try to help them answer it. I’ll do a lot of math problems on the board, and just make sure that they’re staying focused so that they’re listening and following the rules. 

Q: What do you like to do outside of school?

A: I actually am a huge collector of Pokemon cards. I’ve been doing that the last two years or so. A big thing I did this summer was actually travel across the region. I went as far as Cape Cod and up to New Hampshire and down to Rhode Island. Just going to different Pokemon card shops and collecting Pokemon cards from there. I’m a little bit of a nerd. I’m also an aunt to three children. I do spend a lot of time with them, my sister, and their dog. I think those are the two biggest things I do outside of school. 

Q: In your email you brought up that you once were a journalist yourself, how was your experience?

A:  For all four years of my college experience, I went to Framingham State University as an English major with a journalism concentration. Originally, I was the Design Editor for the paper, during my freshman and sophomore years. And then in my junior and senior years I was the Associate Editor. I was the second in command, and it really helped me not only build a community and be involved on campus, but I also got a chance to really hone in on my writing skills and strengthen them and also figure out what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. If you asked me my freshman year of college, I would not think I would be where I am today.

Q: How have your interactions been with students and colleagues so far?

A: Everyone has been super welcoming and kind. I don’t think there has been one faculty or student member who hasn’t greeted me with a smile on their face and told me if I need anything to let them know. So definitely very welcoming and kind.

Q: How was your high school experience?

A: I went to a vocational high school. It wasn’t the traditional high school setting. Basically, the way it was split up was one week I would be in what was called shop”. For me, it was graphic design. People could also do auto tech, auto collision, construction, engineering, that kind of stuff. Then the other week, I would be in traditional classes.