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SCS announces Teacher of the Year candidates

Selma City Schools (SCS) recently announced its candidates for Teacher of the Year.

One outstanding teacher from each of SCS’s nine schools was selected as a candidate for the district’s highest award.

This year’s candidates are Shana Tyson, Vanessa Woodfin, Monica Russell, Kendrick Office, Tamecia Smith, Rita Tarver, Jennifer Hyche, Cynthia Green and Veronica Pitts.

Tyson is a second-grade teacher at Sophia P. Kingston Elementary School and an SCS employee for the past 15 years.

Tyson earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Concordia College after graduating from SCS herself.

Woodfin is a second-grade teacher at Knox Elementary School, where she has been employed since 2012.

After graduating from Dallas County High School in 2005, Woodfin attended the University of Alabama where she received her bachelor’s degree in elementary education.

Russell is a sixth-grade math teacher at School of Discovery and a native of Selma.

Russell calls herself an advocate for student success and said she is determined to ensure that students gain the knowledge and skills to prepare them beyond tomorrow.

Office is a physical education and health teacher at R.B. Hudson STEAM Academy.

Before becoming an educator, Office had a successful football career, at one point playing with the NFL’s Buffalo Bills.

Smith is a third-grade teacher at Edgewood Elementary School, and has served SCS for 14 years.

Smith earned her bachelor’s degree in early childhood education from Concordia College.

Smith also further pursued her higher education and earned both a master’s and education specialist degree from the University of West Alabama.

Tarver is a fourth-grade teacher at Meadowview Elementary School and has worked as an educator for 17 years.

Tarver said her students and coworkers motivate her each day to strive to help her students reach their highest potential.

Hyche has been a library media specialist at Clark Elementary School for 6 years and has worked in education for 18 years.

Hyche said she became an educator to motivate students to read, think, explore and create and added that she loves introducing students to alternative ways of reading.

Green is a second-grade teacher at Payne Elementary School and has worked in SCS for the last 13 years.

She says working with children has given her the determination and understanding to be the best possible teacher she can be now and in the future.

Pitts is a social studies teacher at Selma High School, where she also serves as the Student Government Association (SGA) Sponsor.

Pitts is a 2006 graduate of Selma High School who went on to earn her Bachelor of Arts in History in 2010 from Tuskegee University and then received her Master’s of Education in Secondary Social Science from Auburn University at Montgomery in 2013.

A primary and secondary teacher of the year will be announced at a Teacher of the Year Luncheon on Tuesday, Dec. 10.