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Students, parents and administrators across Wilson County expressed their respect and admiration for teachers this week.
Teacher Appreciation Week is an annual observance to let educators know how much they are valued.
“We Love Our Teachers” was spelled out in big letters in the yard at Rock Ridge Elementary School.
Jones Elementary planned special teacher treats and meals for each day of the week, including a dessert bar Friday with lots of homemade treats.
At Forest Hills Middle School, Principal Jonathan “J.T.” Tribula's father cooked barbecue chicken for his teaching staff. Earlier in the week, an anonymous donor delivered dozens of doughnuts and other sweets from Wilson Doughnut Shop for teachers at the school.
At Lucama Elementary School, the PTO had several special treats for their teachers, including a snack cart. PTO members filled a decorated cart with fruit, chips, candy bars and cake and rolled it down the hallways, letting teachers choose a favorite snack and beverage.
Goodwill was everywhere.
Deans Farm Market sent packages of fresh strawberries marked with the phrase, “I couldn’t have picked a better teacher.”
At Daniels Learning Center, Ray’s Drive-In and Kingdom Life Church provided a table of food for teachers.
Brewmasters made and bagged up 1,600 meals for teachers with bonus cake balls from Wildflour’s Cakes and Confections.
BB&T staffers took breakfast from Chick-fil-A to deliver to teachers at Stantonsburg Elementary School.
All week long, Wilson-area businesses offered teachers discounts. Participants included Chick-fil-A, Food Lion, Lidl, NBlissful Boutique, Domino’s, Arby’s and Zaxby’s.
At Toisnot Middle School, PTA representative Paige Webb helped organize a table full of breakfast goodies including a homemade breakfast casserole, cookies, yogurt, cinnamon rolls, fruits, breakfast bars, blueberry muffins and oatmeal.
“Thanks for being awesome,” read the sign next to a plate of chocolate chip cookies from the WCS Central Office staff.
“It’s a small token of thankfulness and appreciation for what they go through with these kids,” Webb said.
Webb has been involved in the PTA for the last eight years at Wells Elementary School and at Toisnot Middle School and has seen the effort teachers put in every day.
“They dedicate their lives to our children and don’t always get appreciation from students or the parents,” Webb said. “They deserve it.”
Toisnot Middle School’s principal, Wendy Sullivan, said teachers work hard.
“It is often a thankless job, and we just want to let them know how much they are appreciated,” Sullivan said. “It is also an opportunity for the parents to say thank you.”
“It’s heartwarming that the parents really see it and appreciate us,” Stephanie Fowler, an eighth-grade math teacher at Toisnot.
Shemika Davis, a Toisnot teacher assistant for exceptional children, said the table of breakfast items started her day off right.
“You feel all the warmth and the love like we are really doing something good,” said Davis as she walked out with breakfast casserole and grits.
Suzanne Colbert, a sixth-grade math teacher at Toisnot, said it made her day.
“It’s a good way to start my day with food in the belly,” Colbert said.
“It‘s very good,” said Larry Miller, a career and technical education teacher. “It just lets me know that the teachers are appreciated for their good work. It’s a good feeling.”