Florence 1 Schools announces 2018-19 Teacher of the Year
John W. Moore Intermediate School Art Instructor Sharri Duncan has been selected Florence 1 Schools 2018-19 Teacher of the Year. Duncan was selected from over 20 applicants in Florence 1 Schools. Florence 1 School Superintendent Dr. Richard O’Malley made the announcement on Tuesday evening at the 17th Annual School Foundation Gala.
Prior to the announcement, the teacher of the year selection panel reviewed all school teacher of the year applications, and the four teachers whose applications received the highest scores emerged as Honor Roll Teachers. The four teachers including Sharri Duncan, Lynn Perkins of Southside Middle, Kim Cimney of West Florence High and Lenora Rivers-Davis of Wilson High, all underwent classroom observations and interviews conducted by an external, three-member selection panel with Duncan emerging as the Florence One Teacher of the Year.
“Every child is an artist,” said Duncan, who teaches art at Moore. “Being an artist doesn’t mean you must master drawing or painting to prove you are an artist, but to keep open your mind to creative thought. Every career a child chooses depends on creativity to exist. I see developing the child’s mind to think creatively as the greatest contribution I can give a student.”
Duncan has 14 years of teaching experience and has served at John W. Moore for the past 14 years. She is also a National Board Certified Teacher.
“The rewards I find in teaching are when I see students remember years later the thing we did in class and talk to me about that special day in their memory at Walmart,” Duncan said. “Small things that the students say to me that make me know that they have understood the lesson and internalized it into their lives are rewarding.” Duncan went on to say that smiles are her best reward.
Duncan also explained a part of her teaching philosophy, “All children are creative, and it is my responsibility to nurture their creativity so each one can express personal ideas, beliefs, and aspirations toward becoming the best citizen of this world they can be by contributing to the quality of our community.” When asked about Sharri Duncan, fifth and sixth grade students at John W. Moore shared their opinions:
“Ms. Duncan is the best art teacher I have ever had,” said Savannah Johnson.
Sophia Haselden said, “There is never a moment when you’re not learning something, in Ms. Duncan’s class.”
According to Matthew Edwards, Ms. Duncan is kind and understanding.
Alisa Zhu said, “She always helps the students and brings out the best in them.”
Duncan received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design from Texas Tech University; a Master’s in Art Education from Converse College; as well as Alternative Certification for Educators and Art Education Program studies at Francis Marion University. She has served as a presenter of art-related educational topics at both state and national conferences. Duncan will represent Florence 1 Schools in this year’s South Carolina Teacher of the Year Program.
Florence 1 Schools Teachers of the Year are: Sadie Chisholm, Briggs Elementary; Priscilla Mumford, Carver Elementary; Beth Abernathy, Davis Elementary; Matthew Cote, Delmae Elementary; Chasity Davidson, Dewey L. Carter Elementary; Blondell Singleton, Florence Career Center; Victoria Phipps, Greenwood Elementary; Tracie Files, Theodore Lester Elementary; Sheila Chapman, McLaurin Elementary; Sharri Duncan, John W. Moore Intermediate**; Samantha Johnson, North Vista Elementary; Erin Bullock, Royall Elementary; Crystal Deas, Savannah Grove Elementary; Alisha Spears, Sneed Middle; Rebecca Cooper, South Florence High; Lynn Perkins, Southside Middle*; Patricia Nunnally, Timrod Elementary; Megan Gause, Wallace-Gregg Elementary; Kim Cimney, West Florence High*; Monica Felix, Williams Middle; Lenora Rivers-Davis, Wilson High School*.
*Indicates 2018-19 Honor Roll Teacher
**Indicates 2018-19 Teacher of the Year