Position: Third Grade Teacher
School: Underhill ID School
School District: Mount Mansfield Modified Union School District/CESU
City, State: Jericho, Vermont
About the Nominee: Deb Byers was nominated by her principal, David Wells. For over 30 years, Mrs. Byers has put the students, families, and staff members first at Underhill ID School. She followed her mother, who she saw as her hero, into the field of education. Mrs. Byers started at Underhill ID School when it was a tiny five room school. At that time, it was her and the teaching principal who kept the school running without a secretary or any other help. Mrs. Byers is the kind of teacher who never stops learning. She spends her summers reviewing new curriculum and planning lessons for the upcoming school year. She has made a mark on the entire school district as a member of many professional committees, including literacy, math and health/wellness. Mrs. Byers shows strong leadership skills by organizing meetings, sharing knowledge and attending workshops to promote professional growth. She cares deeply about her colleagues and is the one to plan end of year events and acknowledge staff members who are leaving. She always has a personal story to share to let colleagues know how they make a difference at her school. Mrs. Byers always takes the time to help substitute teachers and new teachers. She will take extra recess or lunch duties to help others. She truly cares for her students and has attended many of their events, including wrestling matches, hockey games, 4th grade parties and birthday parties. Mrs. Byers takes the time to get to know all of her students; her favorite quote is: “they won't care to know until they know you care.” When former students come to bring their own children to Underhill ID, they always have fond memories to share with Mrs. Byers. She is retiring this year and is already talking about ways to volunteer at her school to stay connected with the community. Mrs. Byers has been an inspiration to the children of Underhill and Jericho since 1985. She has made a difference in their lives and continues to bring positive energy to the school community, each and every day. She is truly a LifeChanger!