Hawkins school 'Appreciation days' help earn teachers $59,400 in mini-grants

Jeff Bobo • Dec 27, 2018 at 9:00 PM

ROGERSVILLE — A group of Hawkins County teachers who are good at "appreciating" their colleagues were finally "appreciated" earlier this month for efforts which brought $59,400 in grant funds into the school system.

Every year schools across Hawkins County host Appreciation Days as part of the UTrust Appreciation Program, and every school has its own Appreciation coordinator.

During the Dec. 13 Board of Education meeting each of those appreciation coordinators were recognized for being this year's recipient of the "Utrust Best Appreciation Program in East Tennessee".

So far in 2018-19 schools have had special appreciation days for school bus drivers, custodians, and in November, Director of Schools Dr. Reba Bailey.

On Bailey's behalf each school conducted fundraisers for a variety of charities including food banks, Imagination Library, volunteer fire departments, and the Humane Society.

Those special days are held in collaboration with the Utrust Appreciation Program which helps students and their school communities recognize and show appreciation to school employees who make a difference in the lives of students each day.

Utrust provides a model for schools and school districts to use to recognize and celebrate employees.

In addition to the award each school received an extra $100 to conduct their Appreciation Day programs.

Hawkins County Schools human resources supervisor Teresa Drinnon noted, however, that the big payoff is in the form of Utrust grant funding in the amount of $59,400.

Teachers across the county will apply for Utrust "mini-grants" to fund projects and materials for their students.

"Congratulation for earning this honor. The Hawkins County Board of Education was presented with this plaque to recognize your achievement, and it is on your behalf that we are accepting this award because we could not do this program without your effort. You guys are on the ground, you've got those A-Teams (Appreciation Teams) going, G-Force (Gratitude Force)teams that are going at your schools, and you are remarkable."

Appreciation Day coordinators at each school include: Kristy Johnson, Bulls Gap School; Emily Cornett, Carters Valley; Carrie Roberts, Cherokee; Nacole Dykes, Church Hill Elementary; Rachel James and Patricia Chapman, Church Hill Intermediate; Anna Ruth Lloyd, Church Hill Middle; Melissa Long, Clinch; Jenifer Lewis, Hawkins Elementary; David Meade, Joseph Rogers; Sonja Byington, Keplar; Christina Bellamy, McPheeter’s Bend; Bree Lawson, Mooresburg Elementary; Natasha Bice, Mount Carmel Elementary; Brian Laster, Pathways; Shari Dinkins, Rogersville Middle; Tosha Bean, St. Clair Elementary; Carrie Smith, Surgoinsville Elementary; Katina Nantz, Surgoinsville Middle; and Sarah Clonce, Volunteer.


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