Editorial: Teaching excellence

December 13, 2013 

Much is made of the difficulties faced by the educational system in eastern Wake County. But one teacher at East Wake Academy has proven that lack of resources is no excuse for accepting poor results.

Julie Garrett, a fourth-grade teacher at East Wake Academy in Zebulon is one of the finalists for North Carolina charter schools teacher of the year.

Garrett infuses her classroom with excitement and fun. It doesn’t take rocket science to figure out that anyone would take a greater interest in something if it’s fun and if the environment is a pleasant one. That rule applies to adults as well as children.

Garrett has impressed others outside her classroom who see her marching to the beat of a different drummer. Her enthusiasm for the work and for her students is evident and that has translated to higher test scores – the holy grail of the test-happy education braintrust.

It remains to be seen if Garrett will win that ultimate prize, but it’s important to note that she’s among the tops in her profession. There are lessons to be learned from a teacher like that, not just by her students, but by fellow teachers, whether they are in the charter school field, the private school field or even the public school setting.

And her nomination tells us one other thing. What eastern Wake County may lack in terms of resources, it can, at least partially, make up with aggressive teaching.

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