Two educators who first came to the classroom from jobs outside of teaching were singled out for special honors Tuesday by LCPS’s Exceptional Children’s Department.
Julie Wilson of Contentnea-Savannah K-8 School was named 2018 EC Teacher of the Year and Katrina Rouse of North Lenoir High School was chosen EC Teacher Assistant of the Year.
The awards were presented during the opening day program for EC staff, held in Waller Auditorium at Lenoir Community College.
Wilson joined LCPS in 2013 as a lateral entry teacher, never having taught before. She soon completed requirements for certification and, according to EC Department Director Vivian Roach, is now a “model teacher,” serving as a resource teacher and EC chair at CSS.
“You can always count on her to help other teachers,” Roach said in leading up to the announcement of Wilson as winner of the annual award. “She has helped many of our new teachers in the district with classroom management and program instruction and is very deserving of this year’s award.”
Wilson represented LCPS in the North Carolina School Improvement Project (NCSIP) Coaching Collaborative and, through classroom testing, helped refine the “bug-in-ear” remote coaching device devised at UNC-Greensboro. She has shared those experiences with educators at state conferences.
“Anytime you walk in her classroom there is teaching and learning going on,” Roach said.
The EC Teacher Assistant of the Year started with LCPS as a child nutrition worker in 1997. Katrina Rouse went into the classroom two years later and has distinguished herself as a hard worker with a bright personality.
“The students love and respect her,” Julie Hill, EC Department assistant director, said in announcing the honor. “She just makes coming to school more enjoyable and more interesting.”
As with nearly all of the district’s teacher assistants, Rouse doubles as a bus driver, where she also excels. “She makes her expectations known on the bus and students respect her,” Hill said.
“She is a pleasure to work with and we are so thankful to have her in our classroom; our school and county are blessed to have her as a TA.”
In addition to the certificate and flowers presented the winners Tuesday, they are also the LCPS’s guests at the annual conferences of the state’s exceptional children’s educators, where they were will recognized as district winners.