Teacher Spotlight

Metro RESA’s GaTAPP Program Earns Highest Scores from GaPSC

Metro RESA scored a Level 4 rating on the Teacher Preparation Program Effectiveness Measures (PPEMs), achieving the highest possible rating given to a program provider. Published by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (GaPSC), PPEMs provide a tool for evaluating how well educator preparation programs are preparing teachers for Georgia classrooms. The scores are comprised of a combination of measures collected during teacher candidates’ time in the program as well as outcome measures collected in the classroom and school. The data is made available to the public to give insight into the effectiveness of programs across the state. In addition, the…

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Metro RESA names two winners of the annual Valari Mathis Camp Award of Excellence for 2020.

Each year, the Valari Mathis Camp Award of Excellence is given to one or two candidate who exemplify the integrity of the Ga TAPP program by being a professional educator demonstrating commitment, enthusiasm, dedication and leadership. Congratulations to the 2020 nominees, winners and each of their supervisors. Honors were given during a virtual award ceremony and celebration on December 3, 2020. Winners: Brandon Render Supervisor: Ceci McAuliffe Matthew Karoglou Supervisor: Mary Georgann Eaton Nominees: Camilla Cohn Supervisor: Phyllis Porter Deirdre McCarthy – Dillon Supervisor: Phyllis Porter Arquavis Searcy      Supervisor: Linda Paden Laura Sharpe    Supervisor: Ceci McAuliffe Jerlisa Taylor     Supervisor:  Jean…

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Teacher Spotlight: Jairus Hallums

Congratulations to Jairus Hallums for being selected as the 2021 Teacher of the Year for Shiloh Middle School! Mr. Hallums was a GaTAPP candidate with Metro RESA and is now in his fourth year teaching 8th Grade ELA at Shiloh MS. The relationships Mr. Hallums has formed with other teachers, mentors, and district employees have provided a strong support system and encouraged him to dig even deeper. After just a couple years in the classroom, Mr. Hallums became a content lead last year. He also leads ELA bootcamps at the district level. These experiences have challenged Mr. Hallums to continually…

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Teacher Spotlight: JaLynda Drumgoole

On Friday, March 13th, the last day in the classroom before distance learning set in, one of Metro RESA’s first year GaTAPP candidates received a special surprise. JaLynda Drumgoole was teaching a math lesson when her Principal walked in the room along with a journalist from the Marietta Daily Journal and a representative from Superior Plumbing to award Mrs. Drumgoole with the “Apple for a Teacher” award. As a winner, she was given her own iPad and had a featured article in the Marietta Daily Journal recognizing her dedication in the classroom. What makes the award most meaningful is knowing…

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Teacher Spotlight: Kelly Feddersen and Will Dezern

MetroRESA is thrilled to share the accomplishments of 2 super star candidates. Kelly Feddersen and Will Dezern currently work at Wheeler High School and were recently awarded the MLK Humanitarian Award for the Wheeler Fresh Collaborative, a project they founded 2 years ago. The Wheeler Fresh Collaborative began with an idea of using STEAM curriculum to meet real needs in the school by starting a food pantry to send home backpacks of food to students who need it. In the first year, the horticulture club partnered with the culinary department, marketing classes, and the drama club to put on a…

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Teacher Spotlight: Colton Prism

Every year, middle school classrooms are full of students who are journeying through difficult, awkward years of change and growth. Working with middle school students is a calling that is not for the faint of heart. Colton Prism is a standout teacher who embraces the challenges of this age group and leverages his own past experiences and struggles to help those students who need an extra helping hand. Mr. Prism teaches 6th grade English Language Arts at Griffin Middle School in Cobb County. Now in his second year teaching, he has just published a novel, The Unbelievable Adventures of Kaden…

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Teacher Spotlight: Michael Chasteen

MetroRESA is proud to recognize Michael Chasteen, an outstanding educator who is bringing his business experience in Marketing and Sales to the classroom. Mr. Chasteen currently teaches Marketing and Entrepreneurship classes at Campbell High School, where he is truly bringing these subjects to life by guiding students through the process of building their own business. After working 12 years in a Sales and Marketing career with a janitorial supply company, Mr. Chasteen decided to trade in the travel for a career where he could help students. He always thought about his own past teachers and coaches and appreciated the role…

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Teacher Spotlight: Kelsey Bowen

Each year, we have the privilege of working with incredibly talented and dedicated educators who are passionate about their students and eager to grow and develop as highly qualified teachers. Today, we recognize one such teacher who came through the Ga TAPP program with Metro RESA. Mrs. Kelsey Bowen started her teaching career in Atlanta then went on to teach in Baltimore, MD at a school for students with emotional and behavioral challenges. She has recently started working with McGraw-Hill and their adaptive technology devices used to help with remediation on college campuses. Mrs. Bowen’s passion for education started with a…

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Teacher Spotlight: Audrey Waters

Metro RESA is proud to have played a part in equipping and empowering thousands of educators through the years. One such teacher came through the GaTAPP program 6 years ago and is inspiring girls in her school and community through dance. Audrey Waters teaches dance at Coretta Scott King Young Womens Leadership Academy, an all-girls school within the Atlanta Public School System. After graduating from college with a degree in Art History, Audrey spent a couple years performing with the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company’s Second Company in Ohio. During that time, she taught dance on the side but longed to…

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Teacher Spotlight: Lt. Col. Stephen Williams

Through the years, a couple thousand teachers have completed MetroRESA’a GaTAPP program to receive their teaching certificate. Class by class, student by student, these teachers are making a lifelong difference in the lives of tens of thousands of children. One such teacher who is empowering his students every day and giving them opportunities for greater success is Lt. Col. Stephen Williams. Mr. Williams is a retired Air Force Fighter Pilot, Instructor Pilot, Flight Simulator Instructor and retired Captain for Northwest Airlines. Now he is putting his extensive career experience to work by sharing his knowledge with students at Conyers Middle…

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Teacher Spotlight: Heather McNair

The talent and passion of teachers in the MetroRESA network is unbelievable, and Heather McNair is a true standout! Ms. McNair is in her 4th year at Marietta High School, where she teaches Biology and IB Environmental Sciences and coaches Varsity Softball. Thanks to grant funds, Ms. McNair is bringing 4 greenhouses to the Marietta HS campus. The greenhouses will be equipped with hydroponics units that the students are building. They do not use soil, and there are no chemicals; instead, they use biodegradable feed pods. The best part of the project is it is completely student-run. In fact, one…

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Teacher Spotlight: Kellie Mason

Kellie Mason has earned a long list of awards and accomplishments in the past seven years of teaching Latin at Woodstock High School.  She began her teaching career as a long-term Latin substitute teacher. Ms. Mason was hired full-time the next year and later became the school’s World Languages Department Chair, where she still serves for the third year. While in college, Ms. Mason’s original plan was to go to law school. As a pre-law student, she fell in love with Latin and realized there was a huge shortage of Latin teachers. Rumor has it that some students at Woodstock…

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Teacher Spotlight: Ann Baxley, Walton HS Teacher of the Year 2017

Today’s teacher spotlight shines on Ann Baxley, who earned her teacher certification through MetroRESA’s alternative certification program in 2007. Ann is in her 11th year teaching Chemistry and Physical Science at Walton High School, and she is Walton’s 2017 Teacher of the Year! Ms. Baxley began her teaching career in 2007 after transitioning from 15 years running a business, writing curriculum, teaching hands-on science at preschools, and being a “professional volunteer” at her own childrens’ schools and at church. When her youngest daughter graduated from high school, she decided to pursue her lifelong dream of teaching Chemistry. Her passion overflows…

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Teacher Spotlight

We are proud of the hundreds of teachers who have received their certification through Metro RESA’s GaTAPP program. The number of student lives touched and inspired by these educators is unfathomable, and our “thank you” is not enough. With this blog, we would like to highlight some of the teachers who went through our alternative certification program. These teachers transitioned from other careers to teaching. Rather than going through a bachelor program for education, they hold a degree in their field of study and the gaTAPP program provided the instruction, assessment, and mentorship to equip them with the skills and…

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