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Teachers that do receive due respect

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The Book of Genesis tells us about “In the beginning” and while some may revolt or resist against the acknowledgement of creation and/or evolution, the spirit of creativity helps us to evolve, which specifically defines what a teacher does---create plans and ideas then plant them into individuals so that they may evolve into all the things that are needed for the inhabitants of the earth/world can prosper and succeed exceptionally in all areas with all interest and concerns for ultimately the well-being of all.

This is why beginning teachers are so important and must be embraced for a bold future, but more importantly---initially they must be shaped and molded to perform exceedingly well in all of their endeavors-----if the foundation can be laid correctly at the beginning of their knowledge, then they will be able to replicate and/or duplicate this knowledge, goodwill and success in their students at present and to come to birth the teaching kind----“Knowledgeable teachers with contrite and willing spirits”.

The Department of Professional Development and the Education Foundation of Palm Beach County hosted its Annual Beginning Teacher of the Year and Mentor Teacher of the Year Awards Ceremony which took place at Fulton-Holland Education Services Center, an event in support of first year teachers and mentors. The awards were presented to elementary, middle, and high school first year teachers and mentors employed by the School District of Palm Beach County, who have been recommended by their principal for demonstrating excellence. One winner from each division for both awards was announced during the awards ceremony.

The Education Foundation presented each of the following winners with a check for $350 to be used for planning lessons and/or classroom supplies:

Elementary Beginning Teacher of the Year-Alyssa Lembo, Timber Trace Elementary

Middle School Beginning Teacher of the Year-Theresa Cameron, Wellington Landings Middle

High School Beginning Teacher of the Year-Chris Lorenz, Santaluces High

Elementary Mentor Teacher of the Year-Sandra May, Poinciana Elementary

Middle School Mentor Teacher of the Year-Joan Trusler, Independence Middle

High School Mentor Teacher of the Year-Brandi Pennington, Royal Palm Beach High

While a committed focus must be on the beginning teacher, appreciation and consideration focus must be on teachers in their prime (and even in retirement to those that volunteer for education and/or serve on school boards) and recently the Major League Baseball All-Star game was played July 15th in Minneapolis, Minnesota and David Voytek, media specialist at North Grade Elementary was there, representing educators and the Miami Marlins. Major League Baseball, People magazine and Target recognized 30 teachers from across the country in an All-Star Teachers salute.

According to North Grade Principal Nicole Patterson, “Mr. Voytek beat out two other teachers from the area for the honor – one from Miami and the other from Broward. Mr. Voytek won because he received the most votes. Our students and staff were able to cast their votes daily on the People Magazine website. Mr. Voytek works for the 21st Century Summer Camp program as well as North Grade’s Summer Camp program. Our campers would vote every chance they had when they had access to a computer. The students and staff at North Grade are excited that Mr. Voytek was chosen as an All Star Teacher.”

Mr. Voytek organizes the annual trip to Washington for North Grade Elementary, as well as fundraising activities like car washes, a garden club and painting hall murals throughout the school. This Marlins fan has produced award-winning student videos, telecast district-wide, that have earned thousands of dollars to benefit the school.

We must all learn to behold the greatness of our abilities around us and that each of us has a part to play equally to the other, but we must remember to give and receive respect. While we all must “pay our dues” in society---we must also “give due respect”. The homonym/homophone “due and do” needs pondering for distinction and obedience.

REF: PBCSD (E-mail News) Public Affairs Office, July 2014

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