Surry County Schools recently honored its educators of the year with a celebratory breakfast at the Barn at Heritage Farm in Dobson.
The gathering of teachers and administrators chosen as the top in their field from each school, included addresses to the group by the county’s 2018-19 teacher of the year and principal of the year, each emphasizing how important of a role educators play in the lives of their students.
“I’m sure you’ve all had students who come to school for more than an education; students who come to school for food, students who come to school for new clothes, students who come to school to get cleaned up, students who come to school for love,” said Hanna Holder, a cross-categorical teacher at Westfield Elementary School who was named the teacher of the year.
“As we set out to start this new year, be the change, be the smile, be the love. Never give up on the ones who need us the most,” she said.
Paige Badgett, principal of North Surry High School and principal of the year, hearkened to lessons learned from her former basketball coach, Kenneth Kallum.
Badgett said that Coach Kallum would write three phrases on his chalkboard every day: “Think. Bank. Be cool.”
“Think it is non-negotiable that you will leave an impact on someone this year….bank on never settling. Do not be average. Keep recharging and go again. Behind every success story, there are the people who helped to make it happen. This school year let that person be you,” she said.
“Lastly, be cool and embrace challenges. Love what you do. This affects not only you and the way you look at life but also the people around you. If your positive attitude is strong enough, it becomes contagious. I dare you to become infectious this school year…..think, bank, and be cool.”
Holder and Badgett each received a certificate, a parking sign to be placed at their respective school, a Surry County Schools umbrella, and a monetary award from the board of education.
Business partners Gary York with WIFM, Chad Tidd with Chick-Fil-A, and Ryan Flake with Horace Mann also made presentations to the two. Additionally, District 91 NC House Rep. Kyle Hall had a flag flown at the North Carolina State Capitol in honor of each of them and presented them the flags.
“What you do each and every day is extraordinary,” school Superintendent Dr. Travis L. Reeves said to the group. “The hard work and effort you put into building and nurturing relationships, creating engaging and meaningful lessons, planning in your Professional Learning Community team meetings, and going above and beyond to ensure the children of Surry County get the best education anywhere is exemplary.
“You have been selected as the best of the best teachers in Surry County. You are leading the way to make an impact on one student at a time. I am proud to serve as the superintendent of Surry County Schools, where relationships, innovation, good character, and leading with a heart of servant leadership to support children is the norm.”