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Wingate named Teacher of the Year and Beauchamp named Employee of the Year

Gilchrist County School Superintendent Robert Rankin introduced the four school principals at the Monday, January 21, Gilchrist County Rotary meeting. Each year the local Rotary Club sponsors the plaques for the District Teacher of the Year and the District Employee of the Year. This weekÕs Rotary meeting honored those winning from each school and the two overall winners from the school district.
The 2018 winners were Jennifer Wingate and KayLee Crawford Beauchamp. Wingate is the band director at Trenton High School. Beauchamp works one on one with a student at Trenton High School.
Before the presentation began Superintendent Rankin told the group that each school selects their teacher and employee of the year. Once selected, each winner is interviewed by a group independent of the local district and a winner is selected.
Principal Cheri Langford said, ÒMs. Wingate is the Trenton Tiger Pride Band Director. She works countless hours to ensure students are prepared for competitions.Ó According to Langford, Wingate helps her students develop a love for music. Wingate is known around campus to be an extremely gifted music teacher.
KayLee Beauchamp has been a Paraprofessional at Trenton High School for two years. She works one on one with a student and truly loves this student and goes above and beyond for his well being. According to Langford, KayLee is a huge asset to the students at Trenton High.
Bell High Principal Sherry Lindsey was pleased to introduce longtime teacher Johnnie Cook to the Rotarians and guests. Johnnie Cook is the Bell Middle High Teacher of the Year. He taught at Trenton High for 22 years and has been at Bell for the past 10 years. His first year of teaching was spent in Dixie County. Lindsey said he does a great job at the business academy. She said he has a great relationship with his students. When the students leave the Business Academy, he has them fully ready to take and pass their certification test. Cook is known as an encourager and a motivator to all students on the Bell High campus.
Pamela Powell is a wonderful asset to the office staff at Bell High according to Principal Lindsey. Powell, who was named Bell High School Employee of the Year, has worked at BHS for ten years. She has worked with guidance, and now works at the office at the front desk. Lindsey said when people call the office, she is the sweet voice they hear on the other end of the line. She has worn many hats while working at BHS, such as working with 21st Century, and being a class sponsor. According to Lindsey, Powell never tells anyone no and always follows through.
Tanya Rood was the Trenton Elementary School Teacher of the Year. She has been with the Gilchrist County School District for 24 years, serving all of those years in Pre-K or ESE. Through the years she has worked at both Bell and Trenton Elementary Schools. Rood works in the ESE self-contained resource room. Her Principal, Rhonda Akins said, ÒHer philosophy for working with special needs children is that all students can learn, just not on the same day or in the same way.Ó According to Adkins one of her peers said ÒShe was very deserving of the Teacher of the Year award for she goes above and beyond every day of the year. She is sometimes the first person the children see when they arrive at TES, and she always greets all of them with a smile.Ó
Donna Watson was picked by her peers at Trenton Elementary School as Employee of the Year. She has been at TES for 25 years. During those years she has been a Paraprofessional in pre-k, kindergarten, self-contained ESE, and a bus aide. Many people see Watson at all the middle and high school sporting events as she works the ticket desk at many athletic events. Adkins said she is very dedicated to her students and always willing to assist with any student when needed.
Bell Elementary Principal Suzanne Mathe said Rani Rhodes has been teaching for 30 years and is currently teaching 5th grade science. Mathe said, ÒRani is an amazing teacher who brings science to life in her classroom.Ó Mathe went on to say that Mrs. Rhodes can be found in her lab coat on many days doing experiments that give students hands on experience that helps them understand the written material that they have learned.
She also heads up the Relay for Life team each year at BES. Rhodes supports her community and school in many ways according to her principal. Mathe went on to talk about her very good sense of humor. She said Rhodes was much loved by the staff at BES.
The Employee of the Year at Bell Elementary is Tammy White, she has worked at the school for two years as a Paraprofessional. According to Principal Suzanne Mathe she started out as a volunteer and substitute. Mathe said, ÒTammy is one of those individuals that has a talent for just about everything and a zest for life.Ó She also said when she walks into a room you can feel the energy and positivity flowing from her. She is willing to take on any job and do it to perfection with a wonderful attitude, according to her principal. White works with special needs students and is loved by all who work with her.
The District Office Employee of the year is Jennifer Terry who is the receptionist at the District Office. According to Superintendent Rankin she is excellent at filtering calls. She has worked at the county office for seven years. She serves as the home school contract person and serves as administrative assistant to two administrators.
Todd Gray of Gray Construction sponsors the $300 cash award for the Employee of the Year and V & I Maintenance donated the $500 cash award for the Teacher of the Year.
Congratulations to all the Teachers of the Year and the Employees of the Year.

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