Key School Staff

A Dedicated Team of Professionals


From researching physics in a nuclear laboratory, teaching English in Malaysia, developing a math dictionary, working in children's publishing, reporting on television, being foster parents, to running the Boston marathon in record time, our faculty brings a variety of valuable experiences and insights to Key School.

With a commitment to professional development, our highly trained teachers use a unified, intentional, cohesive approach. Dedicated and caring, Key's teachers are committed to helping children become successful students.

Every teacher at Key School is Orton-Gillingham-trained. Each language teacher has completed a rigorous, supervised clinical teaching experience to ensure a high level of compentancy with multisensory structured language instructional principles. Math teachers are trained in the multisensory math principles and approach. Both language and math teachers use a five-step Orton-Gillingham-based lesson plan which includes visual, auditory, and kinesthetic teaching and ample review and reinforcement in a teaching-for-mastery environment. 

Key School provides its own teacher training to all faculty, under the supervision of a Fellow of the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators (AOGPE). Key uses the curriculum standards of AOGPE and is accredited by the International Multisensory Structured Language Education Council (IMSLEC). Teachers are in the mindset of continuous improvement and lifelong learning. Two-thirds of the faculty have passed a national certifying examination and are credentialed at the Certified Academic Language Practitioner level or the Certified Academic Language Therapist level.

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Karen Edwards

Faculty Information
Location(s) Key School
Title(s) Key School Grade 4 Team
Contact Information
School Email
School Phone
(828) 274-0758   x229
Degree(s) B.S., Western Carolina University 2003
Other Information

Karen Edwards is a fourth grade language comprehensive and core science teacher at the Key School and began working at Carolina Day School in 2003. Her daughter, Katie Edwards, is a CDS alumnus who was also a student at the Key School for several years. Prior to entering the teaching profession, Karen worked for 15 years as a registered nurse, and was certified as a neurological rehabilitation nurse. She worked in two inpatient rehabilitation hospitals and cared for patients of all ages with head injuries, spinal cord injuries, and strokes. “I was particularly inspired by the children I cared for who often overcame very serious injuries with such resilience,” said Karen. 

Get to know Karen Edwards:
What professional recognition have you received?
“I currently hold the following specialized certification:

    • (2008) Academic Language Therapy Association (ALTA) Associate / Academic Language Practitioner – Teacher Level
    • (2007) The International Multisensory Structured Language Education Council (IMSLEC) Multisensory Structured Language Training Certificate at the Teaching Level

I have completed the following specialized training:

    • Completed 80 hours of training at the Basic Level Orton-Gillingham Training (2002)
    • Completed 85 hours of training at the Advanced Level Orton-Gillingham Training (2004)

For the past six summers, I have served as a language coach in The Key Learning Center’s Associate Level and Certified Levels of the Orton-Gillingham Multisensory Structured Language Education Coursework.”
In what ways can you teach/engage children at CDS that you couldn't at other schools?At The Key School I am able to provide each student with individualized instruction based upon their unique learning profile. Our multisensory approach helps all students to succeed.”
What do you like most about your job at CDS?I love the students that I work with --they are intelligent and very creative. I also love the feeling of working in a school where my peers work well together and support each other.”
How would you describe your classroom?My classroom is an environment where students feel supported and it is a safe place to make mistakes, ask questions, and try out new skills.”
What is your favorite quote about education, mentorship, children, and/or learning?Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” - Benjamin Franklin
How would you describe yourself and/or your approach to your job in 10 words or less? “I like to think of myself as a facilitator--I provide students with tools and strategies that enable them to become independent learners.”

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