Celebrating our educators: The Golden Apple Awards

 The 4th Chamber of Commerce Golden Apple Awards for Excellence in Teaching will take place at The Harquail Theatre on Saturday, 29 May.
The Golden Apple Awards are sponsored by First Caribbean International Bank,Maples&Calder,Dart Management Services LTD, KPMG, Cayman Free Press,Scotiabank&Trust(Cayman Islands LTD,Walkers,Conyers Dill&Pearman and NCB (Cayman LTD)
   The awards pay tribute to educators throughout the Cayman Islands but particularly to those teachers who have made the most impact on the lives of their pupils as nominated by students, parents and teaching colleagues. This year there were 93 nominations in all and from that 93, the crème de la crème have been chosen in the different categories.
The Observer On Sunday talked to the finalists in each category to find out more what being a teacher means to them. From why they wanted to become a teacher, memorable moments they will treasure and any important advice they have for teachers entering the profession.
   
   
   
   The seven categories for nomination are as follows: Primary School Teacher in a Public School, Primary School Teacher in a Private School, Middle School Teacher in a Public School, Middle School Teacher in a Private School, High School Teacher in a Public School, High School Teacher in a Private School, Principal in a Public or Private School.

Category: Principal in a Public or Private School.
   
Cetonya Cacho, John A. Cumber School
   
 Why I chose to be a teacher . . .  to me, teaching and education in general is one of the few professions in which you wake up in the mornings thinking, today is going to be a good day.  I’ve always wanted to work with children and a career that would enable me to make a great contribution to my country and a positive impact on our youth. 
   
   The advice I would give to an up and coming teacher is . . . you must be passionate about teaching in order to empower children and allow them to reach their fullest potential.
   
   Joseph Wallace ,John A. Cumber School
   
                  
 Why I chose to be a teacher . . .  I always wanted to do make a difference in the lives of others.  At school I realised how much of an impact a teacher could have on children’s lives.
   
   The advice I would give to an up and coming teacher is . . . To understand that the best teachers are not just technically skilled; they are also warm, caring people with a love for children and a respect for the responsibility that they bear to the children they teach, the parents they serve and their community in which they live.

   Robert Lankford, Triple-C School
    Why I chose to be a teacher . . .  I first became interested in teaching after being inspired by my eighth-grade Social Studies teacher, David Clough.  Mr. Clough was very good at separating behaviour from personality; he was way ahead of his time in classroom management.
   My most memorable experience  . . .  cannot be confined to a single event but is rather a collection of memories – a treasure chest if you will – of times when a student “got it,”  (discovered their capabilities) or when students returned to me with gratitude for my being there for them, teaching them and mentoring them — even holding them accountable.

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