An elementary, a middle school and a high school teacher have been chosen as finalists for the title of 2016 Lenoir County Teacher of the Year.
Alicia Stanley of Northwest Elementary, David Roach of Woodington Middle and Nader Odeh of Kinston High were selected Wednesday. All are Teacher of the Year representatives of their schools and were chosen by a five-person panel from Teacher of the Year honorees at all LCPS schools.
The panel based its decision on personal interviews and on a review of portfolios that included a professional biography, account of community involvement and an essay on the candidate’s philosophy of teaching. Led by 2015 Lenoir County Teacher of the Year Amy White of Contentnea-Savannah K-8 School, the panel will observe the three finalists in their classrooms Sept. 1.
The county winner will be announced at the annual Teacher of the Year banquet on Sept. 7, where each finalist will deliver a short speech. The Lenoir County Teacher of the Year will represent the school district in regional competition.
“I’m very excited about this group of finalists,” Robin Roberson, LCPS human resources director and coordinator of the Teacher of the Year competition, said. “As always, our judges had a difficult time narrowing the group of school winners down to three, but the outcome certainly justifies their effort. Any of the finalists would represent our district well.”
Stanley teaches third grade at Northwest and has taught second, third and fourth grades during her six years in the classroom at Northeast Elementary and Northwest. A product of Lenoir County schools, she earned her bachelor of science degree in elementary education from East Carolina University and holds an AIG licensure from UNC-Wilmington.
As a clinical teacher with ECU, she helps develop teacher interns and worked over the summer to help write LCPS curriculum guides for elementary teachers. She was selected to be a presenter at the 2013 Learning Forward National Education Conference in Minneapolis, Minn.
Roach has spent all four of his years in the classroom as a social studies teacher at Woodington. He holds a bachelor of arts degree in history from UNC-Wilmington, where he was a North Carolina Teaching Fellow. He was a 2015-2016 North Carolina Kenan Fellow. He is pursing a master’s degree in educational leadership studies at Gardner-Webb University.
Active in the development of digital instructional tools at Woodington, he spent the past two summers as an instructor and counselor at the STEM camp sponsored by LCPS Gear Up, which focuses middle school students on the value of a college degree.
Odeh has taught social studies at Kinston High for four years. He takes over this year as coordinator of the school’s International Baccalaureate program. He earned a bachelor of arts degree in political science and comparative government and a master of arts in teaching degree in secondary history education from ECU. He is a doctoral candidate in educational leadership at UNC-Wilmington.
He has worked with his high school’s School Improvement and Literacy teams and with its Quiz Bowl team.
At the Sept. 7 banquet, Superintendent Brent Williams will present a plaque to each school’s 2016 Teacher of the Year. In addition to the finalists, they are: Konya Houston, Northeast Elementary; Crystal Bryant, Rochelle Middle; Belinda McGinnis, Early College High School; Latoya Phillips, Southeast Elementary; Wanda Daughtry, Banks Elementary; Sarah Hughes, Moss Hill Elementary; Kara Howard, Southwood Elementary; Joseph Grimes, Lenoir County Learning Academy; David Miles, La Grange Elementary; Darren Smith, South Lenoir High; Zachary Groves, Frink Middle; and Paul Rigby, North Lenoir High; Amanda Price, Contentnea-Savannah K-8; Angela Coombs, Teachers Memorial Pre-K; and Michelle Marker Smith, Pink Hill Elementary.
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