Degrees and Certifications:

Debra H. Groce

Thank you for taking the time to visit this site and find out more about me! 

I am a native of Durham and became familiar with Sanford during my college years as I drove to and from St. Andrews University, where I obtained an undergraduate degree in Psychology and a minor in Education. Later in life, I felt called to go back to school to become a teacher. I attended Campbell University, where I earned a Masters of Education and my AIG state licensure. Before coming to Deep River, I taught fourth grade at J. R. Ingram.

I have been married for over 30 years to Van, a Sanford native, and we have two grown sons. In my spare time, I like to watch sports, especially football, with my family. I enjoy reading, making homemade bread, working in the yard, and relaxing at the beach.

Several years ago, I held a Brown Pelican, a bird I have enjoyed watching soar in the air and dive for food in the ocean for years. When presented with the opportunity to hold this magnificent bird, I was excited and nervous. Fear crept in, and I initially refused, but as I stood gazing at his beauty, I decided I may never have this opportunity again. I put out my arms and was soon holding the pelican! I couldn't believe what I was doing. He was calm while I experienced a wide range of emotions. It was an incredible experience I will never forget! 

Stepping outside our comfort zone and taking risks can be scary, but ultimately rewarding. I look forward to presenting students with engaging, exciting, and interesting tasks that test and expand their perseverance and grit.