Superheroes of Education recognized at Flagler Auditorium in front of family, friends and students.
“Super”intendent Jacob Oliva “flew” across the stage at the Flagler Auditorium, wearing an emblazoned “T” (Super Teacher) blue shirt and a cape that flowed behind him, to start the 2016 Flagler Schools Teacher and Employee of the Year ceremony. 2015 Employee of the Year, Brun Hudson made his entrance on roller skates, twirling and dancing to wall-shaking music. Ed Wolff, 2015 Teacher of the Year, dapperly donned a Panama hat, linen suit, and dark sunglasses for the occasion. This definitely wasn’t going to be a stuffy awards ceremony.
The parking lot at Flagler Palm Coast High School was nearly filled to capacity more than half an hour before the awards ceremony was scheduled to begin. Inside homemade signs bearing school and candidate names, marked the “camps” of each candidate.
The Employee of the Year candidates were introduced in a video clip of Oliva “doing the jobs” of those being honored. From leaf blowing (in a suit), to cafeteria duty (with a hair net), to balancing phone calls in an elementary school (unsuccessfully), a humorous view of challenging jobs was presented.
Teachers and employees were escorted down the center aisle by principals and supervisors, some dancing and greeting the crowd – all enjoying their moment.
The Old Kings Elementary section of the auditorium exploded before Oliva could get the entire name of the school out, much less Kim Week’s name. Weeks, a teacher in the county since 2003 and the media specialist at Old Kings Elementary for the past 10 years, wiped tears away as her family joined her on stage after the program for pictures.
“It’s not unusual to find Kim teaching a technology class for students, showing them the importance of digital citizenship, while keeping an eye on their digital footprint and warning of cyber bullying,” Oliva said.
When his name was called, DeAndre Harris catapulted out of his seat; arms stretched upward, and began hugging and “high-fiving” everyone between him and the stage.
Harris is a paraprofessional who has worked with the Exceptional Student Education students at Indian Trails Middle School for the past year, and, Oliva said, “Has packed a lot of experience into those 365 days.”
The next stop for Weeks and Harris is the State competition for Teacher and Support Employees, prestigious, but probably not as much fun.