Spotlight on . . . Ms. Cathy Adams, PPS District Teacher of the Year 2017-18
Ms. Cathy Adams has been named Piedmont Public Schools' District Teacher of the Year. Ms. Adams is in her ninth year as guidance counselor at Piedmont Elementary School. Her background includes twenty-nine years as a school counselor and special education teacher. Ms. Adams reflects on her varied experiences and the lessons learned-- as a second-grade peer tutor, she learned the feeling of fulfillment as she saw the joy on her friend's face when she was able to put sounds together to read words. In her first year of teaching high school students who were struggling with muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy and quadriplegia, she discovered the importance of students not only experiencing success but also knowing how to deal with frustration and failure. As a teacher of elementary students with learning disabilities, intellectual delays and emotional disturbances, she learned that sometimes the biggest challenge is breaking through students' self-imposed barriers of fear and discouragement. In her role as guidance counselor, Ms. Adams is often faced with helping her students navigate through the many challenges that life brings; and using those challenges to build empathy, tolerance, and understanding.
Ms. Adams acknowledges the critical battle Oklahoma faces with the teacher shortage. She challenges all educators to become recruiters for their profession. She calls on teachers to share their passion with those around them, as it was a comment by her own second-grader teacher, Mrs. Hall, that sent her down the path to a fulfilling career.