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Tiffany Cheshire Named CHCCS Principal of the Year, Shelba Levins Named Assistant Principal of the Year, Additional Awards Also Announced

The annual “Prize Patrol” hit the road on April 12, to celebrate the news of four major educator “Of the Year '' surprise announcements, spotlighting rockstar educators in the district.

The CHCCS Principal of the Year is Phillips Middle School’s Tiffany Cheshire! At a raucous assembly with green and white balloons and attended by her family, Cheshire received flowers from Superintendent Dr. Nyah Hamlett, and asked her, “Are you kidding me?” to which the superintendent exclaimed, “Absolutely NOT, you so deserve this honor!” Dr. Hamlett read excerpts from the nomination submissions, including from Executive Director of Professional Learning and Development, Dr. Danielle Sutton, “Ms. Cheshire cares about the growth and well-being of all of her students. This is evidenced by how much academic growth her students have made in the last year, specifically her Black and Hispanic students.” And fellow principal, Stacie Boyer at Ephesus Elementary, wrote, “Her relationships with students are unmatched, and she is continuously trying to be creative in the ways she reaches all families in her community.”

Assistant Principal of the Year is Shelba Levins at Chapel Hill High School, who, until January, served as interim principal at the school, and by all accounts from her nominators, performed the challenging role at the highest level. Fellow Assistant Principal, Ally Scercy, said, “We have had a lot of transition in the last nine months, and thanks to the relationships and trust Ms. Levins has built in our building, our staff were able to stay focused and trust that things would run smoothly.” Current Principal Steven Sullivan wrote, “Over the years I have taken over schools after the departure of successful principals; however, I do not recall coming into a school that was as well organized and run as Chapel Hill High School under the leadership of Ms. Levins.” Levins burst into tears as her colleagues and the Prize Patrol gave her a long round of applause.

Literacy Coach Ashley Lang at McDougle Middle School is the Jeanette Blackwell Mentor Teacher of the Year, an honor awarded every year since 2009. In attendance were Russell Blackwell, husband of the late (great!) district mentor Jeanette Blackwell, Anissa McLendon, and Lang’s parents and grandmother. The Prize Patrol interrupted a focused consultation with ELA Teacher Jessica Grinnell - a wonderful opportunity to catch Lang “in the act.” MMS Assistant Principal Jaimi West wrote, “She is always willing to work with any teacher who needs her help by sharing resources, observing and modeling lessons and listening when they need to vent.”

Promising New Teacher of the Year, Lauren Oliver at Culbreth Middle School, was teaching a group of 8th graders in the cafeteria when the Prize Patrol swooped in to announce her award. Oliver’s look of surprise was the exact opposite of CMS administrators and staff who watched on proudly and then bestowed gifts and a banner while students cheered for her. Principal Lucas Paulsen wrote, “In her brief time in our school, she has demonstrated an exceptional start to her teaching career, embodying the warm yet demanding spirit that defines successful educators.”

Congratulations to all four of these exceptional honorees, and stay tuned for more! The much anticipated Teacher of the Year announcement will occur at the CHCCS Recognition Celebration on May 9.

Click here to view the video.