Tara Thomas highlights the Gold Star Awards in her post below! KWWL is the media sponsor of the Gold Star Awards. This post can also be viewed on Tara’s blog, Baby Steps.
How it happened I became a news anchor is not easily explained when by birthright I was on track to be in education. My maternal great grandma went to Illinois State University in Normal, Illinois–then a teacher’s college. My paternal grandma also attended ISU as did my dad, mom and only sibling (my sister, Sara). All became teachers. At 28, my father left the classroom to become (at the time) the youngest superintendent in the state. My mom waited 20 years, though, to move to administration. It took getting her doctorate to land an elementary principalship in Peoria after two decades in the classroom. My sister is years into her teaching career, also in Peoria.
And then there’s the veteran teacher I married five years ago who quickly gained my respect. Once I saw how former students from the Indian reservation where he taught reacted upon running into him, I knew he was a good man. Raised by teachers and now married to one, I can tell you the rumors are true. They do spend a lot of their own money for other people’s kids and they do often find themselves in the role of counselor, babysitter and friend on top of mentor and peacemaker. One of the first years Dave started teaching here, he was nominated for a Gold Star Award by a student’s parents. Reading the nomination form meant a lot. Here he was out of his element in special needs, having spent years as a PE and strength training teacher. Yet their small effort to give him some recognition proved he was having an impact–a big one in the eyes of this girl’s family. Nominate a deserving teacher in Black Hawk County for a Gold Star Award. Deadline is March 1.