Posted: Tuesday, November 26, 2019
Ten outstanding GCS employees have been selected for recognition in the Employee Spotlight Program presented by Horace Mann. The Employee Spotlight Program, in its third year, honors staff members who have made significant workplace contributions or accomplishments at Greenville County Schools. Recipients were nominated by fellow GCS employees, who provided information about the employee and his or her work ethic. Horace Mann provides each honoree with an award and the choice of a pancake breakfast or ice cream social for the recipient’s school or department.
Renee Brown, School Counselor
Mauldin Middle School
Not only is Renee Brown an asset to Mauldin Middle School, she is also advocate within her community. As a school counselor, she has built wonderful relationships with the students at Mauldin Middle. She created and implemented a mentoring program called B.L.U.S.H. (Beautiful, Lovable, Unique Sisterhood) to help young women discover their strengths and find meaningful ways to put those strengths into action. She assists students with everything from college applications and scholarships to issues at home. As a mentor, she takes students on college field trips and provides positive messages to students via her YouTube channel.
Karon Dailey, Assistant Principal
Sevier Middle School
Sevier Middle School Assistant Principal Karon Dailey has implemented a program to reduce the number of hours students spend in In-School Suspension by educating both the student and teacher about methods to de-escalate challenging situations. She visits other middle schools to share her successes with ISS and has presented the program to middle schools statewide. After regular hours, Mrs. Dailey has built comradery with the football players at Mauldin High School by feeding them a home-cooked meal once a month.
Tammy Faulk, Cafeteria Manager
West Greenville School
Since taking over the management of the cafeteria at West Greenville School, Tammy Faulk has dramatically improved the quality and presentation of the school lunch line. Embracing the concept of Graduation Plus, Mrs. Faulk started a program that allows students to come into the kitchen to learn cooking skills. She has had as many as nine students training with her five days a week and has seen a very apparent improvement in the atmosphere in the kitchen among these students.
Rachel Ginn, Biology Teacher
Woodmont High School
Woodmont High School biology teacher Rachel Ginn mentored three new science teachers over two years. She provided them with lesson plans, materials, “tips and tricks,” general advice, and made time during her lunch hour and planning period to invest in them. Even when she was out on maternity leave, she provided her mentees with extra help on topics that were being covered during her absence. Because of her dedication, caring, and commitment, Mrs. Ginn helped Woodmont High School set a new record for End-of-Course scores.
Klarissa Hunt, Cosmetology Teacher
Donaldson Career Center
Klarissa Hunt has served as Donaldson Career Center’s cosmetology teacher for three years, and in that time, she has shown her caring, energetic, motivating, and dedicated personality to her students and fellow staff members. She takes each student in as her own, often referring to them as “her babies,” and guides them to succeed in class. She works late two days a week and on Saturdays to provide opportunities for her students to earn hours toward their cosmetology license. Her students visit nursing homes, schools, and other real-life venues to provide services, and partners with local salons to mentor and hire her students. Ms. Hunt’s students had a 100 percent passage rage on the state Cosmetology License exam last year.
Gina Kincaid, School Counselor
Mitchell Road Elementary School
Gina Kincaid has been described as intuitive because she sees what others don’t. She can sense pain and trauma and has the skills and knowledge to handle stressful situations. She has been instrumental in the new Capturing Kids’ Hearts program that helps create a culture of acceptance and love among students and staff. She has formed partnerships with churches and organizations that provide the school with resources and assistance. She is responsible for collecting food for the school food pantry and providing food for students to take home on weekends.
Danielle Knox, Voice Instructor
Fine Arts Center
Fine Arts Center Voice instructor Danielle Knox doesn’t give up until she finds a solution to any issue a student is having. This may involve getting the student to squat, watch themselves in a mirror, or hum. These tricks help students access their lower abdomen muscles to learn how to breathe properly. She uses improv to teach students how to become their character on the stage. On Mondays, she teaches a study of the International Phonetic Alphabet in English, Italian, French, and German.
Evanne Latta, Fourth Grade Teacher
Chandler Creek Elementary School
Parents at Chandler Creek Elementary are so excited when they find out their child has Evanne Latta for fourth grade. Mrs. Latta stays after school to work with at-risk students and often attends students’ Little League games. She leads a girls’ empowerment group and runs a summer camp for children. As the fourth grade team chair, her efforts have strengthened the school because she leads teachers and shows them that everyone is valued.
Ray Steadman, Social Studies Teacher
Eastside High School
Social studies teacher Ray Steadman is described as selfless and compassionate. Earlier this year, he donated a kidney to a student’s father, Mr. Rob Pokora. Mr. Steadman taught Robbie Pokora, the son, and through Robbie, he found out about the father’s urgent need for a kidney. Steadman began the screening process last fall, donated his kidney on August 14, and returned to his classroom on September 26, 2019 with no restrictions.
Jill Thompson, Special Education Teacher
League Middle Academy
Special education teacher Jill Thompson puts her students’ needs first, escorting them off the bus in the morning and walking them to breakfast. She develops individual lesson plans that address the needs of each student based on their academic and social performance. She serves as League Academy’s assistant girls’ basketball coach and gives up her planning period so that one of her students can participate in advanced chorus.