School Celebrates Successes Teachers, Staff & Students

FREDERICK COUNTY, Va. - The teacher that became a mentor, the lunch lady that filled more than your stomach, the bus driver that went the extra mile: these are all examples of Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS) Season of Celebration and Success.

"The program is an opportunity for people in the community to just express their thanks to teachers and staff members,” said Armel Elementary Principal, Raegan Rangel.

"My daughter Hailey is in second grade here with Miss Curtis,” said Kelly Malinowski. “[My daughter] used to hate coming to school. She would cry every morning, and not want to go to sleep at night. After a week here with Miss Curtis, all of the sudden, she was, 'I love school! I want to go! I want to go see Miss Curtis!' Even on the weekends she wants to see Miss Curtis," said Malinowski, who wrote a letter to her daughter’s teacher, thanking her for single-handedly changing her outlook on school.

Cynthia Petty is a first grade teacher at Armel Elementary and also the recipient of this year's Teacher of the Year Award. Recently a parent wrote in about the positive effect that Petty had on their child.

"The letter stated that their daughter didn't want to miss a day of school, because they were afraid that they might miss something that I might teach them that day,” said Petty, with a laugh. “That just goes to show, that everything that I do is worth the time and effort."

"She does really fun things,” said Grace, a student in Petty’s class. 

 “She sometimes helps me with spelling, and with word work, and my reading group,” said Salem Pryor, another student, who said he loves everything about his teacher.

When asked if she would miss Petty next year in second grade, Maci Allman nodded her head. “She’s a really great teacher, and I feel like whoever has her next year should be very grateful to have her."

"I had a hard time not tearing up,” said Petty, when Principal Rangel surprised her with the thank you letter, and read it out loud to her first grade class. “It's so nice to hear recognition from parents."

"When you know that teachers have put so much into this year, there were some that really were touched, and teared up,” said Rangel. “I think it's important for students to see that. It can fuel the teacher’s entry into next year, just a thank you."

Which goes to show that a simple thank you really goes a long way. 

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