With graduation approaching, MSU Meridian hosted its excellence in education banquet and Phi Delta Kappa initiation program Tuesday evening.
The event recognized 21 new members who were inducted into Phi Delta Kappa, the premier professional association for educators. 11 local educators and 4 education graduates of MSU Meridian were also honored on Tuesday night.
"It's important because public education is under a lot of criticism," Dr. George Thomas with MSU Meridian says. "A lot of people don't understand the good things that are going on in school. We have good students, we have good teachers, and they need to be recognized."
Thomas says area educators from Meridian and Lauderdale County school districts were nominated for the excellence in education award by school administrators in their respective districts and/or by PDK members.
Eleven local educators were recognized:
Cynthia Bolden, Information and Communication Technology at Northwest Middle School
Jennifer Davis, Choral music, Piano, AP Music Theory at Meridian High School
Jennifer DuPont, 3rd grade, Poplar Springs Elementary School
Gwen French, 4th grade at T. J. Harris
Leann Oliver, 8th grade science at West Lauderdale Middle School
Lisa Rawlings, 3rd grade at Northeast Elementary School
Julie Rawson, English at Clarkdale High School
Lee Ann Rhaly, Health Science at West Lauderdale High School
Terrie Ridinger, Librarian at West Lauderdale Elementary School
Laurel Rigdon, Teacher Academy at Ross Collins Vocational Center
Carolyn Woods, Inclusion Teacher at Parkview
Four MSU-Meridian education graduates recognized:
Jessica Johnson (Meridian) - Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education, May 2012 - student teaching internship at Enterprise Elementary School.
Paige Satcher (Enterprise) - Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education, May 2012 - student teaching internship at Clarkdale Middle School. Chosen Outstanding undergraduate in Education, Riley Scholar, and Summa Cum Laude honors with a 4.0 GPA.
Danielle Tyrney (Quitman) - Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education, English, May 2012 - student teaching internship at Enterprise High School. Graduate with Cum Laude honors.
Hannah Watkins (Union) - Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education, English, May 2012 - student teaching internship at Philadelphia High School. Graduate with Summa Cum Laude honors with a 4.0 GPA.