Congratulations to the 2014 Georgia Teacher of the Year finalists

Congratulations to the 2014 Georgia Teacher of the Year Finalists (in alphabetical order by district):

Tamika N. Ball, Mathematics Atlanta Public Schools, D.M. Therrell School of Health Sciences and Research

Brandon A. Mitchell, Physical and Environmental Science Barrow County, Winder-Barrow High

Jemelleh Coes, English Language Arts and Reading, Bulloch County, Langston Chapel Middle

Terrie L. Ponder, Social Studies, Carrollton City, Carrollton Junior High

Jeanine Wetherington, Gifted K-5, Colquitt County, Norman Park Elementary

Shannon Pollitz, Eighth Grade Gifted English Language Arts, Floyd County, Pepperell Middle

Barbara Rosolino, English Language Arts, AP Literature and Composition, Henry County, Eagle’s Landing High

David DuBose, Advanced Music, Band and Instrumental Music, Marietta City, Marietta High

Dr. Polly S. Holder, Spanish, Walton County, Walnut Grove High

Tanya Smith, Physical Science and Gifted/Accelerated Chemistry, Wayne County, Wayne County High

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

17 comments Add your comment

Private Citizen

March 11th, 2013
4:38 pm

‘Congratulations! Do we get lesson video from each of them to show us how it is done?! Hi-yoo!

Private Citizen

March 11th, 2013
4:45 pm

Please, no sole finalist! “Teachers” of the year works for me! All for honor and the honor for all! Let them each enjoy their standing! Second place is no place at all!~!!!! Winners all they are today! Do something different, do not repeat the script!

Hold On

March 11th, 2013
5:01 pm

Their not picked by the school boards are they??!?!?!

Dr. John Trotter

March 11th, 2013
11:07 pm

Congratulations, classroom educators!

home-tutoring parent

March 11th, 2013
11:54 pm

Oops! GA Teacher of the Year doesn’t include private school teachers as candidates. So GA Teacher of the Year will be, GA Teacher, in the Second-and-Third-Class-Schools Category, of the Year.

home-tutoring parent

March 12th, 2013
12:27 am

Seriously, parents should go to their schools’ websites to find out the universities that their kids’ teachers attended. Good luck!

Go to the most-respected private schools’ websites, and Georgia’s prestigious universities’ websites, and discover, “Why is it that they post their teachers’ CVs, but public K-12 schools do not?”

“We don’t post our teachers’ alma maters because it doesn’t matter. Most of them went to universities with sub-1100 SAT matriculant median scores, actually sub-1000, so what?”

“As an education leader, I got an 1180 GRE Q + V, and earned a PhD/EdD.”

No wonder that public schools don’t want standardized tests to measure their students’ knowledge.

Private Citizen

March 12th, 2013
1:24 am

home tutoring parent, I’m more concerned about the admin. credentials. They’re the ones who tell teachers what to do and enforce the “how to teach” rubrics.

Pride and Joy

March 12th, 2013
7:06 am

Private Citizen, you’re wrong. It IS NOT the admin’s fault that my child’s former teacher cannot speak common, standard English. She couldn’t have passed a grammar school grammer test. No admin forced her to say ridiculous things such as “DO your chile need to use the microwave?” and write nonsense such as “The principal have (sic) inform (sic) me that….”
She doesn’t use past tense nor do her subjects and verbs agree. She also doesn’t pronounce common words correctly. It was no suprise at all that she attended a historically black college and was getting her eh hem “Masters” degree in education…online.

AP Teacher

March 12th, 2013
8:58 am

@HTP per NCLB you can request the college transcripts of any teacher you want to determine their qualifications. Go for it.

“We don’t post our teachers’ alma maters because it doesn’t matter. Most of them went to universities with sub-1100 SAT matriculant median scores, actually sub-1000, so what?”

Does your score on 1 test matter? Does it really define who you are? If so, then guilty as charged. I know dozens of students who were sticks in the proverbial mud but can test well, and students who are functionally smart and truly “gifted” but struggle on standardized tests.

Not all public school teachers are dumb and stupid. Also, no one is infringing upon your right to educate your child through a private school or home school, and I will be the first as a public school teacher to defend your right to do it as the parent of your child. In light of this,dont trample all over public school students and teachers. Some truly good work is going on on both sides of the desk in public education despite current events.

Private Citizen

March 12th, 2013
10:22 am

Pride, personally I have no problem at all with folk who pronounce English in their own way. I have enough sense to know these speech patterns are formed early and are there to stay.

I’d like to see you go to India and learn some Hindu and Sanskrit. I assure you there are plenty of hateful Hindus who would have a few thoughts to you. You’re quite the bigot, raised with crispy English in the home and public libraries but want to go be jerk to fellow citizen who was raised differently. I also know teachers are not made to order and they sure aren’t all the same. If there is nothing abusive going on (unlike what career minded administrators do to teachers) I don’t see a problem.

Hey Pride, you ought to be a movie director. You could make a movie where everyone looks like you and talks like you. You’d love it.

Private Citizen

March 12th, 2013
10:24 am

I know dozens of students who were sticks in the proverbial mud but can test well, and students who are functionally smart and truly “gifted” but struggle on standardized tests.

brilliantly said.

Jovan Miles

March 12th, 2013
11:16 am

How is it that such a positive post received so many unwarranted negative comments ?


March 12th, 2013
11:49 am

Hey Private Citizen — I guess you don’t care about people doing math their own way either. English, like math is either correct or it isn’t and it is unforgivable that a TEACHER teaches children to speak incorrectly. English may not matter to you __ I think I remember you got canned from your teaching job (good riddance) but it does matter to businesses.
If you can’t write or speak English correctly, you won’t get the job.
As for Indians, they speak English better than most Americans. I hire Hindi workers because they can do math and science and write and speak intelligently and correctly. I toss those other HBCU poorly worded and poorly written resumes in my online garbage can.
So, sure, if you want to speak as if you were raised in the gutter, you can get your 40k teaching elementary kids in a metro Atlanta school but….you will never be a professor in a real college. You will never do anything more than barely survive on your tiny salary or you’ll be flipping burgers and making fries at the South side McDonalds but you sure won’t get a job at the window at Chic Fil A. Even they have higher standards so sure, Private Citizen, I have do doubt that your family conversations are littered with garbage English.
You must be thrilled because ignorance is bliss — have a lovely day.


March 12th, 2013
5:32 pm

@ Jovan Miles. Haven’t you noticed on this blog? Whenever some teacher wins an award , or a student wins a prize, or anyone is recognized as being special for some reason, others vie at once to see who can be most scornful and cynical about the award, prize or recognition. The envy felt by the average, I guess.

Private Citizen

March 12th, 2013
6:56 pm

Original Prof, I think it is a reasonable and productive idea to ask them to furnish video of their technique or method. Supposed to working together, right? In many craft fields, the top people do video of their world, but it is not with all of this critical accountability stuff. They’re recognised simply because they’re good at what they do. It’s like the award teachers go back into their cloaked rooms and draw the heavy curtain and perform some rites and rituals (no disrespect meant, just banter) but really. So many demands and then everyone is on their own like an island.

Private Citizen

March 12th, 2013
7:03 pm

I guess you missed the memo that a high percentage of U. S. college and university teachers are instructors paid per course with no benefits, nothing. It’s a much higher percentage than you might think. Let me summon an article for you. Many have no office, get told assignment at the last minute, no health care, low pay, no policy voting rights, the whole bit.

Regarding “the freelancers,”In 1960, 75 percent of college instructors were full-time tenured or tenure-track professors; today only 27 percent are. The rest are graduate students or adjunct and contingent faculty — instructors employed on a per-course or yearly contract basis, usually without benefits and earning a third or less of what their tenured colleagues make.

Private Citizen

March 12th, 2013
7:09 pm

Schooling, I toss those other HBCU poorly worded and poorly written resumes in my online garbage can.

Yes, if you were more egalitarian in your hiring, we’d probably have a more balanced work force all the way around. You ever heard of training employees? like how great company used to do, or are one of the modern era use and discard business consumers. You ought to eat a slice of crow pie, Mr. Resume Boss, because you are way uninformed about pay and work conditions for what is the majority of university instructors. Hey, take care.