Donna Powell

Position: Fifth Grade Reading Teacher

School: Valdese Elementary School

School District: Burke County Public Schools

City, State: Valdese, North Carolina

About the Nominee: Donna Powell is a consummate professional who is dedicated to her calling. She is accessible, organized and enthusiastic. The students and adults that come in daily contact with her will attest that she embodies the ideal educator. Mrs. Powell is always available to students, parents and co-workers. She is at school early, stays late and even attends extra-curricular events involving students. Mrs. Powell is there to answer questions, give advice and offer that extra bit of encouragement or instruction needed to propel students and co-workers toward achievement. She nurtures students and adults to be the best they can be, and she always does it with a smile on her face!

Mrs. Powell is able to spend high time on task due to her incredible organization and management skills. She prepares for her classes well in advance using the best practices and most applicable resources available. However, she does not fail to adjust as class needs ebb and flow. She is constantly researching how to improve student performance, and she uses any and all data to drive her teaching. Students love learning because Mrs. Powell's fluid style of teaching keeps them engaged and interested.

Mrs. Powell is an enthusiastic and motivated educator. She sees students as people, not test scores. She strives to teach students not only the value of quality education, but the value of applying the knowledge gained to benefit humanity. This is inspiring to her students and co-workers alike! Her students come back as middle schoolers, high schoolers and adults to share their accomplishments and life experiences with her. Former students return because when they leave, they know they are loved and valued.

Mrs. Powell puts her students' needs above her own. She dedicates her time and energy to the students that enter her classroom and to the adults that surround them. She has high expectations and encourages students to meet them with grace and determination. She sets an example of availability, organization and enthusiasm so that students, parents and colleagues will strive to be the best they can be as individuals. Mrs. Powell is a true LifeChanger!

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