Position: Office Assistant, Volunteer Coordinator, Business Partner Liaison
School: Central Avenue Elementary School
School District: Osceola County School District
City, State: Kissimmee, Florida
About the Nominee: Central Avenue Elementary School is a Title I school. Roughly 35% of the students come from families in transition. Felicia Smith has taken on the responsibility to make sure none of these children go home over the weekend without a bag of food, so that they will have meals until they return to school. As the business partner liaison, she has reached out to private and community organizations to give students and their families the support they need by providing them with essential items such as underwear, socks, toothpaste, shampoo, hair brushes and toothbrushes. At the beginning of the school year, Central Avenue partnered with the Florida Hospital due to Ms. Smith's efforts. The hospital donated backpacks full of supplies and personal essentials for students and families.
Ms. Smith works three jobs, but her passion is making sure her students concentrate on their studies. She puts a smile on her students' faces by making sure little details are taken care of for them and their families. The Florida Hospital partnership is only one of the projects she is involved with. Ms. Smith also created the "PERRRR FECT Readers" program for second graders who are struggling with school. This program involves volunteers who will come to school to partner with students and read to them. The volunteers put in extra effort into helping students succeed and gain self-confidence.