Mariposa Teacher receives the Smart/Maher VFW National Citizenship Education Teacher Award

Mariposa Teacher receives the Smart/Maher VFW National Citizenship Education Teacher Award

The Veterans of Foreign Wars and its Ladies Auxiliary annually recognize the nation’s top classroom elementary, junior high and high school teachers who teach citizenship education topics regularly and promote America’s history and traditions effectively.  Teachers who promote civic responsibility, flag etiquette and patriotism are prime candidates for this award.

The local VFW’s of Martin County, St Lucie County, Indian River County, Okeechobee County, Glades, and Hendry County are proud to elect Michelle Smith, second grade teacher at Mariposa Elementary School in St Lucie County, this year for the elementary award.

Michelle was first nominated by Rosemary Ayers, Veterans and Support Director of the LAVFW, and Post 10132 in Hobe Sound. Her application, biography and recommendations from her Principal, Craig Logue, and Asst Principal, Sandra Bushy, showed her to be an excellent candidate for her work. Her “Heroes Breakfast” that she does each year for first responders swayed the election committee in her favor. Her application then went before the District 11 VFW Posts in the counties and she was elected again. The next step for Michelle is the judging at the Department of Florida VFW. There she will be up against 21 other teachers with similar backgrounds that do fantastic activities in their classrooms. If she meets that standard she could be eligible for the National Teacher of the Year where she will travel to Pittsburg, PA this summer to be recognized at the National Convention.

Weatherbee’s Peer Leadership Luncheon

Weatherbee’s Peer Leadership Luncheon

For 36 male students at Weatherbee Elementary, It was an exciting lunch. Indeed, Commissioner Kim Johnson was the guest of honor at the Peer Leadership Luncheon. This luncheon is special program targeting African American male students with low reading proficiency or social/emotional challenges. Every month, these students get together for lunch as they are being motivated by successful African American males from the community. For the month of January, Commissioner Kim Johnson exceeded all expectations as he used his life story to inspire our Peer Leaders.  Before he was elected Commissioner of district 5 in St Lucie County, Mr. Kim Johnson was Outstanding Teacher of the year in St. Lucie County and a winner of the Golden Apple Award in Missouri. In addition, he gave more than 1,000 speeches to more than 1 million teachers and students nationally. Therefore, it was an honor to have such a motivational speaker for the Peer Leadership Program.  This program, coordinate by Dr. Jennifer Nelson and Guermithe Ogé, is one of the strategies used to promote Kids At Hope at Weatherbee Elementary, where ALL CHILDREN ARE CAPABLE OF SUCCESS. NO EXCEPTIONS!