Lisa Duke- FMMS Teacher of the Year
Congratulations to Mrs. Lisa Duke, our 2017 Teahcer of the Year.
The following are comments made by FMMS teachers and staf on behalf of Mrs. Duke:
Mrs. Duke has been at Feagin Mill for several years now working with our Special Education students
in an area we call SID/PID, which stands for Severe and Profound disabilities.
She works tirelessly helping those students be successful using Special
Educations alternative assessments called GAA. This kind of assessment is
very demanding and very challenging and she always has perfect scores on her
assessments! She also takes her students on much needed CBI field trips which
allows them to interact with different people along the way. Mrs. Duke does all
this with an awesome attitude and always a amile on her face. She is always
willing to help whomever is in need around the school with her kind heart and
words. During the year, you have seen her take on many roles from Sunshine
committee to helping in the office or working behind the scenes to make the
school run smoothly.
Not many may know or understand the level of dedication and grit that it takes for Ms. Duke
to run a successful classroom. Each day she enters the building, she
gives 110%, at minimum. Her job requires both physical and emotional
strength. It takes a special person to do what Ms. Duke does and not
everyone is equipped to do it. No two days inside her classroom are the
same. Teaching students with such a unique set of disabilities is certainly
a challenge. Ms. Duke always rises to the challenge with grace and with
patience that sets her apart from all other teachers.
“The best among the best” is the standard for Feagin Mill educators. If you are among the fortunate ones, you will encounter an educator whose daily presence exudes love, a huge dose of caring and complete professionalism. Lisa Duke is this person. It is difficult to list the many “hats” she willingly wears every day. Her contagious smile helps lift the spirits of others. Can you imagine what it would be like to be one of her students? Each day when they walk into their “home away from home,” she expertly creates an atmosphere of learning to meet their challenges. This level of learning has amazed me time and time again.
As regular education teachers, we undertake the weighty job of learning our curriculum to provide our students with a daily plan for average and above average students. Mrs. Duke’s professionalism entails learning each of our curriculum requirements. She is an expert in each curriculum throughout our building for all three grade levels. She analyzes them while honoring the learning styles and capabilities of each of her students. An individual plan is expertly developed to provide daily learning support for each student. She is truly the essence of an educator hard at work. With countless numbers of learning barriers to navigate, she must incorporate creative ways to capture the attention of her students while using the higher-level curriculum provided for regular and upper-level students. She works in the “hands on” world of teaching every moment of her day. Her students require, and she gladly provides a structure filled with safety and maintains a rigorous standard of learning. She works efficiently within the self-contained world of education that requires intense supervision and well-managed organization. When she emerges from her classroom after having no breaks and no planning periods in a classroom situation many of us would consider nothing less than grueling, she is smiling.
Lisa embodies an exceptional level of caring that extends to her Feagin Mill faculty and staff. Have you ever approached her with a request or a concern? She has probably already begun an intervention for that same request, and she is singing with a light heart as she helps others. Lisa actively seeks out ways to help. She values each person, each opportunity to help others, and her professionalism shines through each of these endeavors as well. How about the smile it puts on your heart when she sends a happy birthday email with your name attached. She embraces everyone with that huge, loving heart. She is a humble person who deserves this kind of recognition even though she would not seek out accolades for herself. She serves Feagin Mill well as a coworker, community liaison, teacher, and friend. In addition to exemplifying a top-notched educator, her smile and her open heart are the ingredients that help Lisa Duke standout as the best among the best.