Elementary Teacher of the Year Winner
Finch Elementary School
“One of my students lost her mother earlier this school year, and as I sat next to my husband at the funeral with tears welling in my eyes, my heart broke for this precious little girl who will live the rest of her years without her mother to dry her tears, tuck her in at night and share in life’s ups and downs. I know that I will never replace a parent of any of my students, but for the 40 hours that they are at school each week, they are ‘our kids.’ It is my mission to provide an atmosphere in the art room that is safe, encouraging and intellectually risk free to meet the high standards that I have put in place. I am there to celebrate triumphs and to give shelter in the storm. I truly love my students as if they were my own children.”
Secondary Teacher of the Year Winner
McKinney Boyd High School
“My personal philosophy of teaching is really quite simple—do whatever it takes to produce students who are thoughtful, lifelong, independent, self-directed learners who possess the tools necessary to pursue and accomplish their dreams. If one were to visit my classroom on any given day, I trust that they would quickly observe the essence of that philosophy and the qualities that embody it: good humor, passion, positivity, patience, persistence and flexibility.
I can think of nothing more valuable to a student than making sure that they leave my classroom ready for whatever they may face in the world, and I strive to make sure that happens every year. Indeed, the ultimate goal I pursue is for my students to take complete ownership of their learning by the time they graduate.”