Education

Gwinnett”s Teacher of the Year Finalists

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Heather Watkins
Mulberry Elementary Elementary School Teacher of the Year
Heather Watkins was born to be an educator. Raised in a family of teachers, she said there was “just no question that I was going to be a teacher. We lived and breathed school. Educating and helping others was in my blood.”

She aims to impress upon each of her students that they are valued. She has taught at Mulberry since 2007 and joined GCPS in 2000 as a third grade teacher at Hopkins Elementary.

Lissette McRea
Berkmar Middle Middle School Teacher of the Year
The child of an immigrant family, Lissette McRea faced many struggles. “I am living proof that education breaks the cycle of poverty, and I feel an obligation to help others overcome obstacles,” she said.

She brought several years of elementary experience from outside the district when she joined GCPS. After seven years of teaching language arts at Lilburn Middle, she moved to Berkmar.

Stacey Dunlap
Simpson Elementary Finalist
Dunlap says her teaching philosophy evolves. “I encourage the sharing of thinking processes and problem-solving techniques to encourage and stimulate lifelong learning.”

She”s held the position as media specialist at Simpson since 2012. Prior to that, she was a third grade teacher from 2008-12. She received her bachelor”s degree from Auburn University and master”s from Loyola University.

Carol Williams
Summerour Middle Finalist
Williams believes students can learn math despite past academic performance. “Many dislike mathematics and have negative attitudes about the subject due to past experiences. I can relate to the students” experiences because it was not always easy for me to understand the subject.”

She joined GCPS in 2004. In 2008, she transferred to Summerour Middle, where she teaches accelerated math.

Ashley Allgood
Brookwood High Finalist
Teaching Latin is more than a profession for Ashley Allgood.

“I believe a passionate teacher will motivate students to learn, and in turn, motivated students will have a stronger desire to excel.” She joined Brookwood High as a Latin teacher in 2006, having earned her bachelor”s degrees in Latin and Foreign Language Education and a master”s degree in Latin.