SHORT TAKES: Great teachers inspire great students

By Daily News • Last Updated 1:55 pm on Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Great teachers inspire great students.

If you read the pages of this publication last week, you know the domino effect is alive and well in our area schools.

It started with news that Greenville High School English teacher Elizabeth Nelson had been nominated for Michigan Teacher of the Year. After working 18 years in the Greenville Public Schools, Nelson still exudes a passion every day for her students and teaching literacy. Not only has she been active in the classroom, but Nelson also received praise from Superintendent Pete Haines for her work helping to develop initiatives to improve learning throughout the district.

Speaking of making a difference in the classroom, Greenville Middle School art teacher September Buys was chosen to help write the standards for what students nationwide are expected to learn when it comes to arts education. Buys, who has a number of awards to her name, recently was tapped to serve with other art educators on the visual arts writing team for the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards.

Having these kinds of talents leading our classrooms has translated into inspiring outstanding students.

Consider Greenville grad Tim Schmidt, who took every music class available and participated in the Drama Club while in high school. What he learned here helped inspire him to pursue theater and the more technical side of stage productions. Today he runs all the audio and sound related aspects of the Broadway tour of “Peter Pan”. Pretty impressive.

And then there’s Lakeview High School grad Matt Erspamer and Greenville High School grad Ryan Nielsen who received a national EPPY award for Best University Journalism Website from Editor & Publisher Magazine. The two men are students at Central Michigan University and produce the school’s Grand Central Magazine.

Kudos to all these folks and those who show up in the classroom every day ready to teach and learn. We can’t wait to see what’s next for our schools.

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