This school year’s theme of Game Changers perfectly encapsulates the grit and commitment of the entire Irving ISD family. 

And what’s even more impressive is the passion behind it all.

For one of the district’s special education teachers, Pamela Hickman, her passion comes from her sister’s legacy. 

“My sister was diagnosed with cancer at a very young age and was later wheelchair-bound. I was always there for her, making sure she had a full life,” Hickman says. “Once my sister passed away, I realized I wanted to provide this same level of support and care to students.”  

And she did just that. Hickman began her educational career as a paraprofessional at Nimitz High School, and transitioned to MacArthur High School as a Life Skills teacher when she received her teaching certificate. She has now been in the classroom for seven years, honoring her students with that same passion and commitment she demonstrated with her sister. 

Hickman spends her days teaching students fundamental life and academic skills such as self-feeding, folding clothes and reading. Her ultimate goal is to teach her students some level of independence. 

Her students are making good progress because Hickman utilizes the relationships she has built with her students’ parents to learn best practices for teaching through the computer. 

Although this year has brought new challenges to Hickman as an educator, she’s using this opportunity to learn, to be inspire and to acquire new skills. She is a true game changer.