Morris Named Toombs County Teacher of the Year
Staff members, friends, and families all gathered for the regular monthly meeting of the Toombs County Board of Education on Thursday, October 12, as the Toombs County School System’s Teacher of the Year was announced.
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Studies teacher Danielle Morris was honored during the meeting not only as the Toombs County Middle School Teacher of the Year, but also as the school system’s Teacher of the Year. Morris has taught for almost six years, but has spent four of those years at Toombs County Middle School.
She said it is her students that inspire her to continue to work to be the best teacher possible. “[My students] are such a blessing to me. I love being able to see them succeed and grow into the young men and women that I know they have the potential of becoming. I live for their ‘ah ha’ moments! They teach me just as much as I teach them,” she emphasized.
Morris continued, “I feel so blessed and honored to be chosen by my peers to be Teacher of the Year for Toombs County Middle School. I work with an amazing group of educators who are ALL deserving of this award. I am truly blessed to be a part of the Toombs County School family. I hope I represent them well.”
Other Awardees During the meeting, several other Teacher of the Year awardees for schools within the school system were honored.
Lyons Primary School Lyons Primary School 2nd Grade teacher Ashlen Fowler was the school’s Teacher of the Year honoree. Fowler has been teaching for 12 years – 10 of which have been at Lyons Primary School.
“I feel humbled being chosen as Teacher of the Year for LPS,” she emphasized. “I am so thankful for all the amazing teachers I have worked with over the years who helped me grow in this profession. This is not a job that can be done alone, and I will always remember the people who poured into me so that I could pour into our students.”
When asked what inspired her to continue teaching, Fowler explained, “Seeing students grow inspires me to continue teaching each year. It is a daunting task, but knowing that you helped a student make progress toward their goals makes it worth it.”
Toombs Central Elementary School Toombs Central Elementary School teacher Megan Haygood was recognized for being named the school’s Teacher of the year. Haygood has 17 years of experience teaching, and has spent the last six years teaching at Toombs Central.
“I feel very honored to be chosen Toombs Central’s Teacher of The Year. I know how hard every person at TCES works, so to be considered as a representative of this school is such a privilege,” she emphasized regarding the award.
Yet, according to the 4th Grade English Language Arts and Science teacher, the true payoff for her work as a teacher is seeing the knowledge that students gain throughout their education. “Being able to teach is rewarding. I genuinely like seeing kids grow and learn. Not only do I teach them academically, but I also try to teach them to have good manners, confidence, and respect for others. These are important factors that children need in everyday life,” Haygood remarked.
Lyons Upper Elementary School Kesha Matthews, 4th Grade English Language Arts and Social Studies teacher, is the Lyons Upper Elementary School Teacher of the Year. “I feel honored and humbled to be Teacher of the Year, but at the same time undeserving of the honor because I often feel like I need to be doing more to help students,” Matthews commented.
She has been teaching for a total of 31 years – five of which have been at Lyons Upper Elementary School. She said that it is her own love of learning that inspired her to continue teaching. “I so enjoy learning, so I think that inspires me to continue teaching. Also, my desire to see students grow as readers, writers, thinkers, and productive people inspires me as an educator to try to plant ‘seeds’ into the lives of students that will hopefully continue to grow,” Matthews emphasized.
Toombs County High School High School Engineering teacher Jess Bush earned the honor of Toombs County High School Teacher of the Year. Bush has been teaching for 23 years, but has spent three of those years teaching at Toombs County High School.
“I feel honored and grateful to have been selected as the TCHS Teacher of the Year,” he remarked about the award.
Bush said it is his students that inspire him to continue teaching.
Next Steps Toombs County School System Teacher of the Year Danielle Morris will now work on her essays and other required information to be submitted to the Georgia Teacher of the Year committee, which will choose the state’s next Teacher of the Year. If chosen, Morris will travel the state for the next year, serving as a leader and advocate for the education community.