Henrico’s Top Teachers – Rita Yarema

Rita Yarema seemed likely to become a teacher anyway – her father, aunt, grandmother and cousin all were or are – but when her young sister suffered a massive stroke that paralyzed her, the decision solidified itself in her mind.

Yarema saw how her sister's special education teachers worked with her diligently to help her re-learn how to do almost everything she'd been able to do previously. The experience convinced her that she, too, wanted to work with special needs students as a teacher.

Her teaching career began in New York, where she spent 13 years working in early intervention, primarily with autistic students. When she and her husband moved to the Richmond area in 2015, a job at the Virginia Randolph Education Center caught her attention, though she was initially somewhat hesitant.

“But I called my aunt, who is a retired special education teacher, and my cousin, who is a special education teacher in New York, and they said ‘Give it a year – you’re going to love it and never want to go back to anything else,’” Yarema recalled.“Virginia Randolph is definitely that change I was looking for.”

Many of the eight first-grade students Yarema works with have been unsuccessful in their home schools because of behavioral problems. So she works to implement routine-driven schedules for them and practice rules with them.

“The goal is for these kids to get in, to learn the coping skills and strategies they need, and then to get back to their home schools,” Yarema said.

“Rita balances and attends to the varying needs of each student in their level of transition," a colleague wrote of Yarema. "She is restorative in communication with students, taking the time to process behavioral challenges with students and reinforcing positive behaviors. Rita is open and collaborative with families, talking to parents weekly and sometimes daily to ensure that home and school are speaking the same language and brainstorming how to handle issues that may arise."

Working with families is key to Yarema’s approach.

“All the families I work with, they genuinely want to help their children but they don't know how,” she said.

Yarema is willing to go above and beyond her teaching responsibilities to help students and their families however possible. When she learned one family might soon lose its housing, she took action.

“Rita did not stop at what could be provided by the county or the school; she pulled upon personal connections to help this child and the family in order to provide assistance when needed,” the nominator wrote.

Wrote another colleague of Yarema’s style: “She is firm, but gentle in her approach with students. She does an incredible job of balancing the immense emotional, social, and educational needs of our students. She makes learning fun and accessible and is a true asset to our campus family."
Bail Bonds Chesterfield VA

Crime Stoppers’ Crime of the Week: Sept. 18, 2017


Crime Stoppers is seeking information about a shooting in Richmond that resulted in an injured child and the murder of an adult.

At approximately 10:21 p.m., Sept. 9, Richmond Police were called to the 3200 block of 5th Avenue for a report of a person shot. They quickly located two victims suffering from gunshot wounds, a 57-year-old male and a 9-year-old female. > Read more.

Business in brief


Commonwealth Senior Living at the West End, located at 2400 Gaskins Rd., will hold their grand opening on Oct. 3 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The community recently underwent a multi-million-dollar renovation which included the addition of a new memory care neighborhood, new resident suites, an expanded dining room, and brand-new courtyards and additional outdoor spaces. Commonwealth Senior Living associates will be on site to provide tours of the newly renovated community. > Read more.

Wegmans to sponsor Turkey Trot 10K


Wegmans Food Markets Inc. will become title sponsor of the Richmond Road Runners Club’s annual Turkey Trot 10K, a Thanksgiving Day tradition for many Richmond area runners.

Wegmans and RRRC have signed a three-year agreement whereby the race, beginning in November 2017, will be known as the Wegmans Turkey Trot 10K. RRRC will continue to manage race operations. > Read more.

Publix to open at Virginia Center Marketplace Oct. 11


Publix will open its next Henrico location at 10150 Brook Road in the Virginia Center Marketplace shopping center in Glen Allen Oct. 11 at 7 a.m. The store will host a grand opening ceremony at that time.

The location will be the Florida chain's fifth in Henrico, joining those already open at Nuckols Place and The Shoppes at Crossridge in Glen Allen, The Shops at White Oak Village in Eastern Henrico and John Rolfe Commons in the Far West End. > Read more.

Statewide tax amnesty period underway


Delinquent individual and business taxpayers in Virginia can pay back taxes with no penalties and half the interest from now through Nov. 14, as part of the 2017 Virginia Tax Amnesty Program, which began Sept. 13.

Approved by the 2017 General Assembly, the program assumes collection of $89.5 million for the general fund to support education, health, and public safety, as well as to provide a cash reserve. > Read more.

Henrico Business Bulletin Board

September 2017
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