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Top Teacher Award Nominations 2012

Metro Parent asked southeast Michigan parents to tell us which teachers have made a difference in your child's life. Check out all the 2012 nominees and see what moms and dads had to say!

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Patricia Green

Clarenceville Middle School, Livonia

"I would like to nominate Mrs. Patricia Green, because she takes time out of her schedule each Sunday night to email parents with the week-ahead schedule, what supplies are needed for science projects, what studies need to be done for the tests that are coming up, and what is happening in the school as a whole. I feel she gives her students extra care by doing this, to help each student achieve their goals, and keeps parents aware of events, etc. I would like Mrs. Green receive a thank you for her efforts and know that she is appreciated for all she does."

– Elizabeth, Redford

Renay Gamble

Bennett Elementary, Detroit

"My nomination is not only a teacher, but also my mother and friend. Currently, she is a first grade teacher at Bennett Elementary for Detroit Public Schools, and she has dedicated her entire life to teaching. Although her income steadily declines, she continues to invest in the lives of her students. The past few years she has been moved from school to school, and taken on each new classroom with a positive attitude. She provides stability for students who do not experience it at home, and develops partnerships with parents who are involved. She even bakes cookies for parents who attend parent-teacher conferences to thank them for coming. A few years ago, she was placed in an eighth grade classroom and raised money on DonorsChoose.org to raise funds for a special dinosaur project. She is a true problem solver and will always find ways to give her students the best educational experience, regardless of economic issues. She has a huge heart for her past and present students and has such joy in watching them succeed. I would like nothing more than to recognize her as a Top Teacher because she lives out her commitment to be an outstanding educator every day. No one deserves this more than my mom."

– Lindsey, Farmington Hills

Amie Jamison

Hillcrest Elementary, Dearborn Heights

"Lately, it seems like teachers are constantly being criticized and bad mouthed. Their 'job' performances questioned and budgets constantly being cut. Personally, I have always considered teachers to be much, much more important than they are given credit for! My daughter has been blessed with one of the best teachers I have ever had the pleasure of knowing and working with. Mrs. Amie Jamison was my daughter's teacher from first grade through third grade at Hillcrest Elementary. In those three short years, both my daughter and myself grew to love Mrs. Jamison and now we think of her as a part of our family! I have no doubt that she will be 'that teacher.' The one who is always invited to family birthday parties and eventually graduations and beyond. First and foremost, Mrs. Jamison helped to develop the CAP (Crestwood Accelerated Program) in my daughter's elementary school. From the first day of the program, Mrs. Jamison was always looking for fun and exciting ways for the kids to learn. Our school had never had such a program, and it was Mrs. Jamison that made it a success. I feel that any less of a teacher could not have pulled it off! Mrs. Jamison has always showed incredible compassion and love for her students. You can tell she cares deeply for each one of them. There are so many different instances I can recall where she went out of her way to help my daughter outside of the 'normal' teacher role. I'm not sure how many you would like for me to list but just a couple examples would be: When Gracie was being picked on, on the bus home from school, Mrs. Jamison went out of her way to get me the information I would need to get the situation resolved. When we found out that Gracie's grandfather (my father-in-law) had stage-four terminal lung cancer, Mrs. Jamison (again) went above and beyond her 'teacher' role. By recommending several different books and websites, she gave me invaluable resources on how to talk to Gracie about this sensitive matter. Most importantly, Mrs. Jamison instilled a love of learning in my daughter that I doubt would be so great otherwise. That, in itself, is the greatest gift a teacher could give any child and I will always be indebted to her for it!"

– Wendy, Dearborn Heights

Mrs. Netta

Rainbow Academy Too, Detroit

"I would like to nominate Mrs. Netta at Rainbow Academy Too, because she is so compassionate about her kids. She goes above and beyond to make the children feel welcome every day. She always tells the children that they can do anything. From Day One, my son Reese has loved coming to school; he is learning at an excelerated rate because Mrs. Netta invest time into his future. She is a preschool teacher well deserving of the title Top Teacher."

– Richelle, Southfield

Pamela Samsel

Weston Academy, Detroit

"I would like to nominate this teacher because she is wonderful. She is an absolutely wonderful teacher. She goes far and beyond the measures of teaching kindergarteners. She makes learning fun and easy to understand. She does not just put her knowledge into teaching; she also put her heart into it. I admire her for that. I also enjoy working with her. She is a great person, a phenomenal role model, and the best teacher to be nominated for the Top Teacher Award."

– Beauty, Detroit

Tonya Byrd

Nolan Preparatory School of Excellence, Detroit

"My daughter has autism. To find the right school is hard, but when you find the right teacher, that is part of the key that will open doors for all children with special needs. You need time and understanding, but most of all a kind heart to be good mom, friend, mentor for all children. This has been a hard journey for me. My child is now in the fourth grade. There has been wonderful service staff that has made a change in our lives, but to have a teacher that loves her job, cares for her class, makes a mark in a child's life that is struggling to just belong and a mom that needs comfort that everything will be all right, that is what matters the most. My daughter finally found her best elementary teacher. We're really blessed."

– Lucinda, Detroit

Kelly Bartashnick

Meek-Milton Elementary School, Inkster

"Kelly's dedication to her students is inspiring. She cares about them deeply and goes above-and-beyond her duties as a teacher to make sure they have the supplies they need to get through the school day. Kelly works in a higher-poverty school, and we find her in our resource center after school, or on weekends, picking out school supplies, books, hygiene items and clothing for her students who need them the most. She comes in to do this on her own time. Kelly is moved by her students' needs and you can sometimes see a tear as she recounts their stories. She's committed to the success of her students and enjoys seeing the looks on their faces when they receive something special. Kelly has also become an advocate for all the students in need within her district. Kelly's energy, compassion and dedication is worthy of being rewarded."

– Menachem, Troy

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May 9, 2012 12:40 pm
 Posted by  Kristina

My son Jaxon is currently in Mrs. Ricci's Kindergarten classroom. She is so loving and patient. She challenges her children and keeps them moving forward. She works with each child at there level and keeps them moving forward. She inspires them to learn and to love learning. My son just loves her!

May 22, 2012 11:56 pm
 Posted by  looghe

My son had Wayne Janda for 3rd grade at Pinewood, he has got to be the best teacher he has had so far. His grades were great he excelled in math. I could not have asked for a better teacher. He is one of those
teachers who makes learning exciting and fun. If a child was having a hard time he goes the extra mile to help.

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