Posted: Thursday, February 25, 2016
Brenda Deener, a math teacher at Lifelong Learning Center, has been recognized as the Adult Education Linda Belue Part-Time Teacher of the Year by the South Carolina Association of Adult and Continuing Education.
Ms. Deener is so popular that students must earn the privilege of being assigned to her class. Selection includes earning a silver or gold WorkKeys certificate and maintaining an excellent attendance record. Ms. Deener makes a positive difference in each student’s life, encouraging them to work to their full potential. When a student complains that the work is too hard, she informs them that she beat Stage 4 breast cancer and they can certainly learn a simple math procedure. Many students have commented, “If I had been able to have a teacher like Ms. Deener in high school, I might not have dropped out.”
Every student that Deener recommends to take the GED math test has a 100 percent pass record. She teaches students much more than what is required to pass the GED test because she knows they will need the extra knowledge to be successful at the technical school or college.
Ms. Deener invited a school custodian, who is developmentally challenged, into the class to practice his vocabulary words on the board. One of Ms. Deener’s greatest memories was when he was finally able to write his name on the board -- in cursive. He was proud, Ms. Deener was proud, and the other students were proud.
Among Brenda’s many talents is the ability to sing. A new student this year named Adeline had the luck to be in Ms. Deener’s first period class. Every day she was greeted in class with the song, “Sweet Adeline.” A simple, perhaps silly thing, but this is just one example of how she makes every student feel special.
Brenda began her career in Adult Education in 1976. She earned an undergraduate degree from Ball State University and a master’s degree at Furman University. She has additional certification in Emotionally Disabled and Learning Disabilities.