Teacher of the Year Ceremony!

Hard work, dedication and a love for their professions are just a few of the common factors found within the list of candidates for Teacher of the Year 2007 - 2008. On October 3, these outstanding individuals were recognized for all the superior contributions they have made to their schools. During the ceremony, our principals took a few moments to elaborate on the specific qualities that made his or her candidate unique. The Effingham County Board of Education would like to extend our most sincere congratulations and deepest appreciation to all candidates; espcially Lori Lancaster - our County Teacher of the Year!
Lori Lancaster
S. Effingham Elementary School
Effingham County's
Teacher of the Year!

Lori Lancaster - SEES

Mrs. Lancaster’s classroom is like a student-centered learning lab where hands-on activities are the norm. Her creativity allows her to dream up ideas and ways of teaching that cause the learning to “stick” with her students. Rather than “telling” her students, she allows her students to “discover”. Activity abounds in her classroom and no student is ever bored.
She absolutely loves each and every day of teaching her students, and at the beginning of her eighth year as a 5th grade teacher, she still says that she wants to “kiss the threshold” of the door every time she enters our school in the morning. Enthusiasm like Lori Lancaster’s is contagious in every positive way imaginable.
Students love and respect her and parents have confidence in her. She is one of those special teachers who is able to be totally honest with parents; at times delivering information that would normally be difficult for parents to hear. However, when Mrs. Lancaster communicates problems, she does so with such sincerity and compassion that parents always interpret the information in the spirit in which is was intended and the students always benefit in the end. This is another one of Mrs. Lancaster’s special gifts.
She is a teacher who is loved and admired by all and I am proud to introduce her as The Effingham County Teacher of the Year for 2007-08.
- Cheryl Christain
Principal of SEES
Schoolwide Nominees
(in alphabetical order)

Chris Brundage
Marlow Elementary School
Melissa Buchanan
Blandford Elementary School
C. Brundage - MESMs. Brundage is an outstanding teacher and an inspiration to her colleagues. She approaches her job with humor and makes lessons exciting for the children. She is always willing to go the extra mile, searching for innovative ideas that will motivate her students and enhance their learning. This statement from a former student explains why Ms. Brundage is Marlow’s Teacher of the Year: “She helped me if I didn’t understand.”
- Betty Ferguson
Principal of MES
M. Buchanan - BESMrs. Buchanan came to Blandford in 2006 to help establish a new school with the high level of expectations established by this county. She is organized, passionate, and energetic. She truly knows how to maximize instructional minutes. She took several paths before being led to the one that is truly rich in rewards. We are proud to have her represent Blandford Elementary as our first Teacher of the Year.
- Karen Durkin
Principal of BES
Marcie Crosby
Guyton Elementary School
Dawn Finley
Effingham Co. High School
M. Crosby - GESMarcie Crosby was selected as our Teacher of the Year because of her creativity in the classroom. She has a unique style of teaching that is very effective. She makes learning fun for students. It all comes to Ms. Crosby so naturally. It seems to come to her so easily. You never know what her students might be doing or wearing. Ms. Crosby's classroom is like a big stage, and there is always a show in progress!!
- Lewis Beacham
Principal of GES
D. Finley - ECHSDawn has been at ECHS for 6 years and brings many great things to our school. She opts to cover classes during her planning period, directs and runs special education meets and represents us as an LEA Rep during IEP meetings. She is truly an advocate for students with disabilities and has the best interest of children at heart. I am proud to know her and have her here.
- Yancy Ford
Principal of ECHS
Serena Harden
Springfield Elementary School
Shelly Hobbs
S. Effingham Middle School
S. Harden - SES
Mrs. Serena Harden is a second grade teacher at SES. In addition to earning a Specialist Degree from Georgia Southern University, Mrs. Harden earned a Media Specialist and Teacher Support Specialist Certification. Mrs. Harden is a true asset to the teaching profession. She creates exciting lessons and integrates up-to-date technology in her daily instruction. All students thrive in Mrs. Harden’s classroom. Her commitment to her students and their progress is never-ending. Mrs. Harden’s students think that she is “just perfect”.
- Terri Johnson
Principal of SES
S. Hobbs - SEMSMrs. Hobbs was born to teach. Her dedication to her students has been evident since her first days in the classroom. In addition to her diligence in providing educational experiences in the classroom, Mrs. Hobbs also provides outstanding opportunities for students in extracurricular activities. She is an Assistant Softball Coach and the Science Olympiad Head Coach. She daily goes above and beyond for her students, her school, and her profession. At SEMS, we value her as a teacher, leader, and role model.
- Mark Winters
Principal of SEMS
Anthony Mastrianni
Ebenezer Middle School
Lynn Mock
Rincon Elementary School
A. Mastrianni - EMSAnthony Mastrianni currently teaches 7th grade Math at EMS. He was a former civil engineer who was drawn to teaching because of the impact a former teacher-administrator made on him when he was young. He began his career in our county at the Effingham County Alternative Program (The ARK) in the mid 90's. He is devoted to his profession - each year he gives out his home number for students to call any time for help. He also provides weekly tutoring sessions for any student at EMS who needs help in Math. He is a true professional and an asset to EMS and the entire school system.
- Beth Helmly
Principal of EMS
L. Mock - RES
Lynn Mock has been teaching for 20 years. She teaches First grade and is Rincon Elementary's Clinical Associate for GSU. Her teaching does not end here. She has taught Vacation Bible School every summer since she was a teenager, and has taught Sunday School, Wednesday night classes and Jr. Church. She has expressed her hope that one of her greatest contributions to education is to make school a happy place so that children would want to come and learn. It seems Mrs. Mock’s hope has come true because she does that on a daily basis.
- Paige Dickey
Principal of RES
Lori Moreland
Sand Hill Elementary School
Crystal Napier
Pre-K Learning Centers
L. Moreland - SHES
Mrs. Moreland works with special needs students in an inclusion setting for the majority of the day. She is called upon daily to support students, parents, and teachers, which she does with fairness and compassion. Her greatest contribution in education is in knowing the positive impact she has on students’ lives. It is most important to Mrs. Moreland that her students have a nurturing, loving and stable environment in which to learn. She wants each child to feel confident in knowing that they can accomplish much through hard work and determination.
- Melanie Reiser
Principal of SHES

C. Napier - Pre-K

Crystal Napier is a Savannah Native, graduated from AASU and Cambridge College, Boston, Mass. with a Masters Degree in Education. Mrs. Napier taught at Bethesda Home for Boys before moving to Effingham County. Mrs. Napier is a quiet trooper but very much in control of her classroom. She sets an example on her hallway with her approach to her children and the atmosphere in her classroom. She loves nuturing her children.
- Bobbie Allen
Coordinator of CLC & MLC
Kamala Neurath
Ebenezer Elementary School
Linda Slaughter
S. Effingham High School
K. Neurath - EESA sunny bright disposition, big smile, and megawatt energy best describes Kamala Neurath, Teacher of the Year. We have been extremely lucky to have her at EES for the past 7 years. Our reason for choosing to honor her in this way is quite simple: Kamala represents to us what is “right” about the world. She loves us all despite our faults. If you are having a bad day, she can make you smile. If you need a friend, you will find compassion. If you need help, she has a ready hand. If you are looking for someone to race with down the hallway after the children have left, look no further, you’ve found her!
- Beth Kight
Principal of EES
L. Slaughter - SEHSLinda Slaughter, math department chair at SEHS, is a natural choice for our school's “Teacher of the Year”. She holds a masters degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Armstrong Atlantic State University and is currently in her 15th year of teaching. Most good teachers possess some of these attributes: sense of humor, patience, courage, resilience, imagination, boundless energy, infinite tact, a deep seeded love of learning and an equally deep understanding of all levels of children. Ms. Linda Slaughter is one of the very few who possesses all of them.
- Daniel A. Noel
Principal of SEHS
Cynthia Stuckey
Effingham Co. Middle School

C. Stuckey - ECMS

Cynthia Stuckey has been a guide and teacher of young people since 1970 when she graduated from Michigan State University. Having taught classes from Kindergarten to Gifted Middle School in Art, Language Arts and Science. She has expanded her own learning by participating in a comprehensive range of professional development courses, history classes, ecosystem studies, computer skills. She received her Masters in Education from Cambridge College in Boston. In the words of her students “she is simply the best”.
- Robert Porterfield
Principal of ECMS