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Posted: February 12, 2016

Supt. Sings Praises of Those Who Go Above & Beyond

In her weekly message to employees, Superintendent Raquel Reedy congratulates National Board Certified Teachers and others like them who put in extra hours to better serve students.

NBCTs Jacki Terrell of La Cueva and Shannon McCrady of Polk.

NBCTs Jacki Terrell of La Cueva and Shannon McCrady of Polk.

I'd like to introduce you to Jacki Terrell and Shannon McCrady, two of 32 new National Board Certified Teachers who join the more than 500 in APS who have earned this distinguished honor.

Jacki is a math and statistics teacher at La Cueva High School. Shannon teaches art and social studies at Polk Middle School. Both care very much about public education, professional development and, of course, their students.

"Throughout my teaching career, I have felt like I am constantly looking for inspiration - something new, something different, how can I improve? How can I be better than I was yesterday?" Jacki said when asked why she chooses to go above and beyond what's expected of her as an educator.

"I have been to countless workshops, seminars, conferences, heard some of the best speakers, worked with some of the latest technology. But looking back on all of my experiences, the inspiration that I seek comes from something I see every school day - my students. I hope they understand that their enthusiasm, creativity, curiosity, humor, just their presence inspires me to be the best that I can be."

Sound familiar? I know for a fact that many of you feel the same way. So many of our teachers, administrators and staff are inspired by their students and want to be all they can be for them.

Shannon put it this way: "I want to give my students the most opportunities to learn and experience new projects as possible."

This wonderfully creative teacher - like so many in APS - knows that providing opportunities for students often means working long after the school bell rings. Like putting together a holiday craft fair where students sell artwork they created out of toilet paper rolls and other recycled materials. Not only did Polk's fair earn money for art classes, but it sparked enthusiasm and showcased student innovation. Shannon said Channel 4 weatherman Steve Stucker purchased a few pieces, featuring them on the morning news the next morning!

Even If your class, your school, hasn't been featured on the morning news, or you haven't earned national honors, accolades or awards, I know so many of you surpass expectations each and every day. You come in early, stay late, work at home. You coach, support and cheer on your students. You connect with their families. You collaborate with peers. You continue to learn and improve.

I notice and appreciate what you do. It's all worth it when our students succeed, wouldn't you agree?