2019 North Dakota Teacher of the Year Kayla Dornfeld (Delzer) has been keeping her usual, blistering pace as an educator, both personally and professionally.
This past week, she was in Washington, D.C. representing all of our state’s proud educators at National Teacher of the Year program activities. While there, she advocated for all her fellow educators in our state, and personally met with all three of North Dakota’s Congressional delegation. “I’ve never felt like a bigger and braver advocate for North Dakota education than I do this year,” she said, “and it has been an awesome experience.”
Before she left, though, she was busy in her personal life too, as she was married to Dan Dornfeld in Fargo on April 12. For the occasion, Kayla invited all of the students in Mapleton Elementary School, where she teaches third grade, to attend.
“On the happiest day of my life, I knew how much more special it would be to have my students in attendance,” she said. “At this point in the year, we have become inseparable, and they were counting down the days to the wedding since January 1, when it was 100 days to go. Since our school district is smaller — about 150 kids — I decided to invite all of the students in our school. If I didn’t teach them yet, I will. What better way to kick off the start of a new relationship?”
Mr. and Mrs. Dornfeld both felt honored and appreciative to the students in attendance and their parents and families for letting them share in the couple’s big day. “The relationships I build with my students transcend the classroom,” Kayla said, “and I couldn’t imagine tying the knot without them. My students are more than just students, they become part of my family.”