Mrs. Deanna Cureton (pictured far right) was named Charlotte-Mecklenburg School Teacher of the Year on May 3rd, receiving her award from 2016 winner, Jordan Todd.
“We Must Continue to Grow”
“One thing we have to know about education is that it’s a learning experience,” Mrs. Cureton told the crowd in her acceptance speech. She went on to say, “and it’s one we have to continue to grow through and learn from our students so our practices cannot remain stagnant. We have to grow with our students to encourage them.”
She went on to say, “it’s one we have to continue to grow through and learn from our students, and so our practices cannot remain stagnant; we have to grow with our students to encourage them.”
Principal Will Leach commented, “Deanna truly cares for her students and their success at the next level. There is mutual respect between the teacher and the student.”
A “Changed” Teacher
Ms. Cureton said that teaching at Charlotte Early Engineering College has been an incredible learning experience for her. “After 16 years of teaching, it has completely changed the type of teacher that I am. My lessons are focused on collaboration and project-based learning. It’s made me a better teacher. My students have benefited from having a voice and a say and a choice.”
Mr. Monnett was in attendance this year with his wife, Deborah, a former teacher and public educator, along with another accomplished trial lawyer from the firm, Randall Phillips.
“I strongly believe that our public education system is one of the institutions essential to maintaining our freedom. Our democracy cannot function without educated citizens. We must fully support our public education system and the professionals who dedicate their lives to teach our children. They do not get the credit and respect they deserve,” Mr. Monnett stated.
Charles G. Monnett & Associates donated $1,500 for the winning teacher, $1,000 for the winning teacher assistant and additional donations were made to each finalist.
Steven Randolf of Allenbrook Elementary was named 2017 Teacher Assistant of the Year.
The Value of an Early College Program
Cureton said she values working in an early college program. “As a first-generation college graduate, access to college courses is so important,” she said. “We all know people that are struggling to pay off student loans, and being able to leave here with up to 60 credit hours is invaluable to our students. This model allows students, regardless of their economic status, to have opportunities to become whatever they want.”