Working in education can be much more than a job to some people, such as Massanutten Military Academy’s Head of School Kim Elshafie-Layman. Mrs. Elshafie-Layman is in her 11th year at MMA and is true representation of the school motto “Non Nobis Solum” (Not for ourselves alone).
Elshafie-Layman has been an educator for over 20 years. She first earned a degree in English from Shenandoah University, and went on to earn two master’s degrees in Adult Education and Training and Administration and Supervision. Her education career began in Front Royal, VA where she taught for 12 years in public school. A friend and teaching colleague told her about Massanutten Military Academy, and she decided to look into private school education.
Elshafie-Layman began her journey at MMA in the summer of 2011 as an English teacher and department chair where she fell in love with the cadets and all that MMA has to offer. She soon was promoted to the Academic Dean position at Massanutten. During Elshafie-Layman’s leadership as Academic Dean, MMA implemented STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) for all cadets to ensure students were prepared for future education and careers. MMA offers STEM tracks in Biomedical, Computer Science and Engineering. Elshafie-Layman’s foresight in understanding today’s youth and importance placed on technology has caused traditional methods of teaching and learning to be challenged. Elshafie-Layman has also promoted experiential learning, the process of learning through reflection of experiences. To ensure MMA cadets are provided with experiential learning in each class, she compiled a faculty who bring diverse backgrounds and experiences with them to MMA. Elshafie-Layman and staff work with experts in the field of experiential learning to ensure that teachers are equipped with the most recent and innovative teaching techniques available.
In August 2018, Mrs. Elshafie-Layman was appointed by the Board of Trustees as the first female Head of School at MMA. In March of 2020, Elshafie-Layman led MMA’s team, students, and families through unprecedented circumstances during the on-set of the COVID-19 pandemic. Cadets successfully finished the 2019-2020 academic year via the school’s online learning platform, Canvas. Through relentless meetings, research, preparation and preparedness, Elshafie-Layman spearheaded MMA’s efforts for in-person classes for the 2020-2021 academic year. MMA opened campus on August 8, 2020 for in-person education under the safety and protocol plan. Through Elshafie-Layman’s consistent leadership, the Class of 2021 graduated as a group on May 1, 2021 in-front of family and friends in an outdoor, socially distanced ceremony on campus.
Elshafie-Layman is entering her 4th year as Head of School and has provided MMA the dedicated leadership, consistency, and cadet-focused environment to serve students for years to come. Her platform to continue her pursuit of bringing the most rigorous and high-quality education to MMA and ensure each cadet receives an education built on collaboration, critical thinking, and innovation is unwavering. MMA is already enrolling for in-person instruction for the Summer STAR Program and the 2021-2022 Academic Year. The Summer STAR Program runs from June 19-July 24. Students can choose between 4 programs:
- JROTC (high school)
- Colonels Camp (5th-8th grade)
- Esports Training Camp
At MMA, cadets are provided with a superior academic experience that will not only set them up for success while they are on campus, but beyond as they head into their next academic endeavors and career pursuits. For more information on enrolling your student at Massanutten, click here.