- The Story
Thanks to nominations by Woodforest residents, two hardworking teachers received $1,000 each for their classrooms as the winners of our Educator Spotlight Award.
The quarterly promotion that honors deserving teachers or staff members at schools serving Woodforest went to Elizabeth Tarver, a teacher at Stewart Elementary at Conroe Independent School District in Woodforest, and Boone Suttles, a teacher and athletics coach at Oak Hills Junior High in Montgomery Independent School District.
Tarver, a beloved first-grade teacher, received four nominations from our residents. Her kindness, patience and devotion to making learning fun were cited by all of the parents.
“I love the joy being around children brings me,” Tarver said. “They are like co-workers who are always joyful and loving, and those that are not, I feel blessed to be able to help them cope with what is preventing that from happening.”
She tries to make learning as hands-on and authentic to real life as possible. Her students incubate chicken eggs for science, use manipulatives for math and write letters to Santa. What she loves the most is helping children develop reading skills.
“I love that I am in a grade that teaches students to decode and read books,” she said. “Many first graders enter barely reading 50 words, and they leave us reading short chapter books. It is so beautiful to witness and see their pride and confidence grow.”
Suttles was nominated by his wife Amy Suttles, also a teacher in Montgomery ISD.
“My husband teaches and coaches three different sports at Oak Hills Junior High School,” she said in her nomination. “He often works 12+ hour days and will happily bend over backward for students and parents who need him. His students love him, and kids request to have him as a teacher. He even helps the high school coaches with football and golf.”
The busy educator teaches Applied Engineering and Applied Business, Marketing, and Finance to eighth-grade students. He coaches seventh and eighth-grade football, as well as seventh-grade basketball. He is also the golf coach.
“I enjoy the bond you get to build with your students throughout the years, whether it be in the classroom or through coaching,” Suttles said. “The opportunity to help mentor and/or be a role model is also beneficial.”
Both teachers already have plans to use the money to benefit their students. Tarver will use the money to purchase new innovative science tools, grow her student library with current trending books and update many outdated flexible seating options in the room to allow more movement for the children throughout the day. Suttles plans to use the money to purchase consumables for his classroom.
Both educators want parents to know that they have their children’s best interests at heart.
“I am a teacher and a coach, but also a parent,” Suttles said. “I don’t do anything different or treat anyone different than I do or would my own kids. I always have the best interest in kids and try to guide them in the best direction.”
Tarver said that she has high expectations for her students but loves watching them soar.
“I hope parents know that they can trust me and share their own challenges as parents and that by communicating that with me, we make the best team possible for their child's success.”
We love our teachers and are so lucky our young residents have such awesome educators. We are taking nominations for the third quarter Spotlight awards now. The winners will be honored in October.