GHS Teacher of the Year recognized

© 2018-Mountain Statesman

GRAFTON—The Taylor County Board of Education met Tuesday evening, at Grafton High School, to honor the GHS Teacher of the Year, as well as discussed multiple other topics.

Linda Casto, Director of Curriculum Instruction, presented Amber Smolski, with the GHS Teacher of the Year Award, Casto said, “I have known Amber for years, it is an honor to present this award to her.”

Casto told the board “Every year we take nominations, and it is my responsibility to read what teachers are thinking about as far as being a teacher.”

Casto continued, by reading a letter from Smolski.

“The reward I find in teaching is watching students achieve their goals. Some refer to them as ‘Aaahh moments,’ and I call them light bulbs. Its when I watch students have that moment, when the light bulb finally turns on, when they get a new glimmer in their eye, that I feel my greatest sense of accomplishment as an educator. It is those small moments that I live for on a day-to -ay basis, to keep from getting bogged from all of the negativity that can quickly consumes ones passion,” Casto read.

The board congratulated and thanked Smolski for her dedication to the county.

Superintendent Kathy Green said, “I appreciate everything you do. You are wonderful for Grafton High School, and you’re wonderful for the students. Your dedication is just beyond what we could ever ask for.”

In addition, School Nutritionist Donette Nines, showcased new menu items being offered, and some of the favorites of the students for the board to see and try.

Some of the items included, barbeque teriyaki chicken, homemade bread and butter pickles from Anna Jarvis Elementary School, along with homemade pizza and various other items including, fresh vegetables and fruits.

Nines shared with the board, that Anna Jarvis makes all of their bread for the pepperoni rolls. That is something she hopes to start with all the schools in the county.

“The cooks are trying new things and they just want to do well for the county, and the kids,” said Nines.

Tammy Murray, Cafeteria Manager at Anna Jarvis Elementary School said, “ The cooks need to be proud. It’s just not a job, you should be proud of what you serve the kids.”

Nines shared, she holds a cooking club with the cooks to bring them together as a group to learn new made from scratch recipes to make for the students. 

Dr. Joseph Findley, Principal of Grafton High School, said the students really enjoyed the barbeque teriyaki. It was first served at school on Monday.

Also at the board meeting, the Grafton High School Jazz Band, under the direction of Band Director Chris Rucker, welcomed the board and guests with a performance.

In addition, Taylor County School Bus Driver Angie Moore, Transportation Supervisor Todd Bolyard, and Coordinator of Mechanical Services Garry Weaver, came to the meeting to give the board an update on the two new propane buses.

The drivers received a course through Bluebird, to show them the proper way to drive the bus, shared Bolyard.

Moore told the board, “I love the new bus, and it is very quiet compared to the diesel buses.”

The county has been using the new buses for approximately three weeks now, and both of the drivers love the buses, said Weaver.

Moore brought her bus to the meeting for the board members to see. She also told the board the heater in the bus works very quickly.

“The bus has air conditioning also. When the weather was nice last week we tried the air conditioning, it worked very well,” Moore told the board.

The new buses are three inches taller inside, and also equipment with three cameras throughout the bus.

“Since these buses require less maintenance we will save money in the long run,” added Weaver.


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