City schools honor ‘everyday heroes’
by By DELANEY WALKER Banner Staff Writer
Jan 10, 2013 | 954 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
School board members, administrators and teachers took a break from discussing safety plans during a recent Cleveland Board of Education session to honor the everyday heroes of the city school system’s classrooms and hallways.

Employees of the month from both Blythe-Bower Elementary School and the Teen Learning Center were presented before school board members.

Barbra Ector, TLC principal, praised the work of Andrea Moore, administrative assistant, and Blair Deacon, guidance counselor and social worker.

“[Andrea Moore] is a joy to have around. ... She is the heart and soul of TLC. She loves what she does,” Ector said. She said she had never “been afraid at TLC until the first day she was out ... I got really nervous. We really love Ms. Andy.”

“Our second person in the spotlight is Jessica Blair Deacon ... When I taught her as an eighth-grade student, she had character and momentum about her. She would help anybody. ... She has always been patient and loving. ... It gives me great pride to say I have a little bit to do with how she turned out.”

Kelly Kiser, Blythe-Bower principal, introduced Gloria Scott-Richmond, music teacher, and Sue Griffin, nurse, to the board.

“I can promise you there are not two more valuable people in city schools than the two ladies standing here with me,” Kiser said.

Kiser said Richmond is responsible for Blythe-Bower being the only elementary school in the city with a school band. She is also developing a strings program through a partnership with Lee University. Kiser said she is well known among her peers for being a wonderful person.

Griffin has given equal measure to the school, according to Kiser.

“Our school nurse, Sue Griffin — or as our students call her, Dr. Seuss — has been at the school for 12 years,” Kiser said. “I will tell you she is one of the hardest-working individuals I have been around. ... She is wonderful with our children. ... She is invaluable to us in keeping our students in school.”

A unanimous vote by the board members placed Tom Cloud once again as chairman of the school board. Steve Morgan was made vice chairman with Murl Dirksen chairman pro-tem.

Several board members will attend the annual Day on the Hill on Wednesday, Feb. 20. They will join school board members across the state in Nashville to meet with their representatives and senators. The event is sponsored through the Tennessee School Board Association.

Dr. Martin Ringstaff, director of city schools, said he would be unable to attend due to a school safety summit.

“Kevin Brooks has requested we come up on another day, anyway,” Ringstaff said. “It is completely crazy during [the Day on a Hill]. He said he could sit down and spend hours with us another day.”

Additional school board news discussed included:

n Paul Ramsey announced TVA awarded Cleveland schools a $10,000 grant in consideration of energy saving techniques used for the building of the Betsy Vines Theater at Cleveland High School.

n Several changes have been made in the CHS handbook and curriculum for the 2013-14 school year. Additions include a third level of leadership, an entrepreneur class, and a culinary arts class. Additional changes will be added in the next month.