Article by Caitlyn Nicholson & Melissa Segovia-Hernandez
Featured Image from https://dchs.godavie.org
The 2022-2023 school year for Davie County High presents Lester Robinson as Teacher of the Year and Teresa Whitaker as Teacher Assistant of the Year. With this title comes honors for both of these individuals. For Robinson, some of these honors include crowning the homecoming queen, receiving prized gifts, and having the chance to advocate for students and teachers around the school.
Robinson first had the desire to begin a teaching career after a previous aim towards engineering. “Engineering didn’t work out for me, so I thought to myself, ‘students need math teachers’ and that’s how I came to this career,” Robinson said.
Recalling his 22 years of teaching, Robinson says the thing he has learned most as a teacher is patience and, “anxiety medicine is a good thing when prescribed.” He also confessed, “you really don’t learn math until you teach it.” With this, Robinson’s favorite part about teaching has been “seeing that spark in motivated students who wish to learn.”
As Teacher of the Year, Robinson has chosen to put forth more of his efforts in advocating for teachers. “I feel like the teachers are being pooped on right now, so my heart goes out to those teachers because if they feel like they are being taken care of, then they can share that compassion with the students,” Robinson said.
Despite what he’s already done, Robinson wishes he would have “done a better job of expressing concerns.” He believes that there is still damage among students due to COVID that may be irreversible. “The damage we’re seeing in work ethic and in student’s knowledge is profound”, Robinson said. He states that it has been “exhausting for teachers to repair the damage on one hand but keep pace on the other. But again, if they feel nurtured, then they can help their students.”
Robinson was astonished but proud of this title given to him this year and hopes to further express the ideas of both teachers and students in the coming years
Teresa Whitaker is the 2023 Assistant Teacher of the year. She has been a football, soccer, wrestling, band, track, and cheerleading mom, but most significantly, she has been significantly hardworking. She has been an assistant for Mr. Brown, Mrs. Coburn, Mrs. Coburn, Mrs. Mathes, Mrs. Fanale, Mr. Welch, and the Soaring Eagles.
Some of the responsibilities she has include subbing for teachers, keeping work hours/required paperwork for students in the OCS program, organizing student folders/work samples, grading papers, assisting teachers to provide services according to students’ IEPs, assisting students who are on a travel plan, monitoring on the CCT vans, and much more.
She has volunteered at Mocksville, Suwanee, Shady Grove, Ellis, South Davie, and Davie High. Currently, she is working at Cornatzer Elementary and has been for 21 years. She has been an assistant for CTE, P.E., encore, and resource classes, and has also answered the phone for the front office.
Whitaker said, “it has been a great honor and privilege to work with a great team and students. I feel appreciated and acknowledged for all the work I have done.”
Thank you, Teresa Whitaker, for all the helpful things you have done and we appreciate all the time and effort you put into helping students grow and learn for a better future.