Surry County Schools recently honored Educators of the Year with a celebratory breakfast at the Barn at Heritage Farm in Dobson.
Musical selections “Together We Can Change The World” and “Put A Little Love in Your Heart” were performed during the program by Amey King, Kristi Edwards, and Karen King, a trio of educators from Flat Rock Elementary School. Moreover, the Board of Education presented each teacher of the year with a certificate, an embroidered Surry County Schools jacket, and a monetary award.
The Surry County Schools 2021-2022 Teacher of the Year Alicia Fallaw emphasized her background and how those who guided her early in her profession helped lead her to a career in the classroom.
“I am a teacher as a second career. I worked in human resources but was offered the opportunity to tutor in a first grade class at Flat Rock Elementary and the rest is history,” she said. “I wanted the joy that I found in that room. I wanted to make a difference. So I went back to school again and here I am today.”
Fallaw concluded by offering the audience an important message: “My message to you is to be someone’s sunshine even on the hardest days. We are teachers and it’s what we do, we can change the world, one kid at a time.”
Amy Harris, the Surry County Schools 2021-2022 Principal of the Year and recently appointeddirector of secondary curriculum and instruction, also addressed the audience. She gave a brief presentation on her background and stated how the lessons taught to her by one of her students early in her career have followed her as she continues to make an impact in the lives of students.
“I am so thankful to be spending the morning with such talented colleagues and friends.” Harris said. “I cannot wait to see what great things come out of your classrooms this year and look forward to watching you make an impact in the lives of your students and each other. As you go throughout this year, don’t forget to challenge yourself and colleagues to dream big and set wildly important goals. We all have the power to lead ourselves and others so that we can change our world.”
The newest distinction for the system is the Beginning Teacher of the Year. Lydia Haynes echoed the thoughts of her fellow speakers by recounting her first year of teaching and what she thought was the most important lesson.
“You can plan and prepare as much as possible, but sometimes you can still fall flat on your face. With that being said. you can’t let the fear of making a mistake hold you back,” she said. “Things might not always go as planned, but you can still turn a shortcoming into a great learning experience.”
Fallaw, Harris, and Haynes received a plaque, a Surry County Schools embroidered jacket, and a monetary award. Business partners Gary York with WIFM Radio and Ryan Flake with Horace Mann Insurance also made presentations to the District Teacher of the Year, Principal of the Year, and Beginning Teacher of the Year. Superintendent Reeves presented on behalf of Chad Tidd from Chick-fil-A of Mount Airy who could not be in attendance.
“Education, like no other profession, has the opportunity to push the symbolic reset button and give this school year a fresh start; a brand new opportunity to help our students design their dreams and grow as leaders,” Reeves said.
“As we get ready to reset and go into this year, I look forward to leading alongside you this school year and supporting you in our important work. I am excited about the wonderful things I will observe in your classrooms and schools this year and I challenge each of us to strive every single day this school year to help children design their dreams and grow as leaders to lead self, lead with others, and to change our world,” he said.