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September 23, 2004 Extra Credit
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September 23, 2004

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"She Has Such High Expectations For All Her Children"

The U.S. Department of Education is recognizing "American Stars of Teaching" with certificates to encourage and honor the teaching profession. American Stars of Teaching are teachers who, regardless of the challenges faced, are improving student achievement across the nation and therefore proving false the myth of "unteachable" students. The following are excerpts from an article in yesterday’s Bowling Green Daily News (KY) highlighting the U.S. Department of Education’s recognition of an American Star of Teaching in Kentucky:

"When Donna Carrier entered the teaching profession 25 years ago, she did it for the right reasons – she had a passion for educating children and watching them grow. Now, the Oakland Elementary School fifth-grade teacher’s hard work has paid off. Carrier had a special visit Tuesday from Donna Muldrew, an official in the U.S. Department of Education, who [recognized] the teacher as a No Child Left Behind American Star of Teaching.

"Carrier, the only teacher in Kentucky to achieve this honor, accepted the plaque to the cheers and applause of students, parents and education officials. ‘It is indeed an honor and a privilege to be here to recognize one of our best teachers,’ said Dale Brown, superintendent of Warren County Schools, as he welcomed the crowd and introduced Muldrew.

"Muldrew spoke directly to the students, telling them they should be proud of their teacher. ‘We want to honor our teachers in the nation,’ Muldrew said. ‘They’re the ones shaping the future of our country, and that’s a very important job.’"

"Carrier was nominated for the American Stars of Teaching [recognition] by Oakland Elementary’s principal, Mike Taylor, who said her passion for her profession is unmatched. ‘She has such high expectations for all her children,’ Taylor said after the brief ceremony. ‘She has an enthusiasm I’ve rarely seen in my 20 years of education. Every day is a new opportunity for her, not just another day of work.’

"Oakland Elementary, which has a high migrant population, has seen an influx of non-native English speaking students in the past few years. Despite this, the school has met adequate yearly progress for the 2003-04 school year. Part of the school’s success is attributed to Carrier’s ‘History Alive’ program, which focuses on literacy and social studies through group work. The program’s effects can be seen in the school’s increase in social studies proficiency – 58.5 percent in 1999 to 96 percent in 2003.

"‘Teaching is not an easy job when done right,’ Carrier said to the crowd. ‘The quality of your life and your students’ must increase.’"

The complete text of this article is available from the Bowling Green Daily News online archives for a fee.

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NCLB Extra Credit is a regular look at the No Child Left Behind Act, President Bush's landmark education reform initiative passed with bipartisan support in Congress.

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Last Modified: 11/22/2006