Baldwin County Schools - BOE 2020 Fall Issue - Page 19

Katrina Veal

Midway Hills Primary Teacher of the Year

As a young child , it never crossed Midway Primary ’ s Teacher of the Year Katrina Veal ’ s mind that she would become a teacher .

Born and raised in Baldwin County , she reaped the benefits of being taught by some dynamic educators during her educational journey .
“ It wasn ’ t until I walked in Mrs . Gussie Harris Sutton ’ s eighth-grade math class that becoming a teacher became a thought . Mrs . Sutton made math fun and exciting . I remember reciting in class every day , “ I am somebody .” It was Mrs . Sutton who whispered in my ear one day , “ Little Liggins , a teacher you should be .”
Veal said Mrs . Sutton encouraged her daily , constantly telling her that she was good at helping her fellow classmates and that she just had that ‘ teacher spark ’. No matter where she was around town , she always encouraged her to become a teacher . Veal worked diligently to make this her reality .
According to Veal , Mrs . Sutton ’ s encouragement wasn ’ t the only reason why she chose to pursue a career in teaching .
“ Another reason for which I chose to enter education was to have a positive impact on students who had no support at home , yet were still educationally successful . My brother and I were raised by my mother , who was our sole provider . It was the support of her , my grandparents , and caring teachers such as Mrs . Sutton that helped me become the teacher I am today .”
In her opinion , her greatest contribution to education would be her ability to ignite a passion for learning in her students . Her philosophy is that cultivating a passion for learning in students is her responsibility because they are our future .
Over the past 23 years , she has worked to make learning engaging for the students she ’ s taught .
“ I ’ ve had the honor of teaching a wide array of students in the educational setting ranging from kindergarten to fourth grade . Because I have experience in both upper and lower grades , I ’ m able to pull in a variety of educational strategies that are rigorous , engaging , differentiated , and student-centered . Hopefully , I have provided my students with a quality education that will prepare them for the future .”
One of her accomplishments in education is being featured on 41WMGT news station on March 5 , 2018 . The station did a segment entitled “ What ’ s Right In Our Schools ?”
“ They came to interview the students and me . The students had the opportunity to explain coding and demonstrate using the app Scratchjr ,” she said . Veal has also been featured on 13WMAZ . “ I also had the honor of being chosen as the recipient for channel 13 WMAZ My Teacher is Tops twice . I have always wanted to be on television . I think I was more excited than the students . Both were truly accomplishments that I will never forget . Neither would have been possible without my students .”
Her biggest accomplishment is being featured in Suzi Pepper ’ s book Teaching In the Fast Lane . www . baldwincountyschoolsga . org BALDWIN COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT • Fall 2020 • 19