René Herrick, a fourth-grader teacher at Combs Elementary School in Raleigh, was named Wake County’s 2009 Teacher of the Year on Thursday.
Herrick, a teacher for five years, was praised for her data-driven classroom instruction and for her active involvement in the lives of her students. She tutors students after-school. With her husband, who is also a teacher, she takes students on outings to movies and restaurants.
Her supporters stressed how much Herrick cares about her students.
“Mrs. Herrick brought her parents to my daughter’s piano recital,” said Janice Buckner, a parent. “She and her husband attended a swim meet the summer after our daughter graduated, then they both attended the Christmas program at our church in December in which both of our daughters were singing. Mrs. Herrick is truly remarkable in the way she cultivates relationships with the children.”
Muriel Summers, principal of Combs, said Herrick's classroom is magical.
“There is so much love and happiness in the room. You can feel it the moment you walk in,” said Summers. “It is in this classroom that children want to be their best and give their best to Ms. Herrick in hopes of making her as happy as she makes them.”
Click here for info on the other 11 finalists.