By Rachel Kelly Photo by Justin Duckworth of Kara Beloate
Peninsula High School
Kara Beloate has been teaching for 32 years and is currently a teacher at Peninsula High School, where she teaches 12th grade English and CWU Introduction to Jazz. Kara has also taught UW and CWU English through a college and high school partnership. She previously taught 30 years of theater arts.
Kara shares that she didn’t always want to be a teacher. She was resistant to teaching simply because, in her family, it’s the default. “I had to know that teaching is what I wanted to do, and here I am, 32 years later, still doing it,” she says.
Kara is absolutely in love with the kids. It is her joy to learn from them even as she teaches. One such example is the play Othello. She must have read the play 20 times, but her students have opened up things in it that she hadn’t previously seen. Kara has the rare opportunity in her work to learn and teach at the same time, ensuring that her job is never dull.
There have been many highlights throughout her career, but one memory stands out as being particularly special. Before COVID, when she was teaching theater, she was watching her students perform Once On This Island on the 5th Avenue Stage. Their performance went on to win the award for Best Direction and Best Cinematography. Kara could not have been more proud of her PHS students!
When not teaching (or putting in additional hours outside of her contracted time), Kara can be seen in the garden with her purple petunias, in the woods with her black lab, writing on her computer, at the theater, perusing thrift stores for vintage finds, or floating on the water with a book and a Diet Coke.
Kara believes firmly that love is the thing that makes the world go round; something that is seen in her personal life, as well as her dedication to teach her students. She believes that there is always more than one way to see a thing, and it is the greatest gift of love to consider another point of view. In this divided world, Kara believes that peace comes from listening to differing perspectives—even when it challenges one’s own. In this way, Kara is not just a teacher. She is a role model and an ambassador for understanding and peace.
Thank you, Kara, for all you do and have done for our kids over your 32 years of service.