Posts tagged ‘Tamara Cotman’

Meet the APS Elementary School Teacher of the Year: Leslie Harrell-Tumlin, Warren T. Jackson Elementary

Leslie Harrell-Tumlin
Warren T. Jackson Elementary School
Dr. Lorraine Reich, principal
Tamara Cotman, executive director, SRT-4
Leslie Harrell-Tumlin is a 2004 graduate of Furman University where she concurrently completed two bachelor of arts degrees in elementary education and French. Her first teaching assignment led her to an “at-risk” school in rural South Carolina. Two years later, she became the only non-native French teacher at a language immersion school. She is proud to begin her fourth year as a teacher of fourth grade at Warren T. Jackson Elementary School. Presently Tumlin is enrolled in Georgia State University where she is pursuing a master’s degree in reading, language arts, and literature with an ESOL endorsement. (Watch her acceptance speech as Elementary School Teacher of the Year here.)


October 20, 2010 at 12:15 am 1 comment

APS honors 2010-11 Teachers of the Year; Brown Middle’s Belita Hamilton wins overall award

Pictured, top row from L-R: Leslie Harrell-Tumlin, Belita Hamilton, Wanda Brown-Cook; Dr. Kathy Augustine; Ann Cramer.
Middle row, from L-R: Urban Youth Harp Ensemble; various school teachers of the year; Tamara Cotman with Leslie Tumlin.
Bottom row, from L-R: Belita Hamilton; Randolph Bynum and Wanda Brown-Cook; Hilaire Anelone and Belita Hamilton.

UPDATE: Watch multi-media coverage including videos and photos here. Learn more about Belita Hamilton here, Leslie Harrell-Tumlin here and Wanda Brown-Cook here.

Atlanta Public Schools honored its 2010-11 three grade-level teachers of the year with a ceremony held Tuesday night at South Atlanta Educational Complex — with Brown Middle School math and science teacher Belita Hamilton winning the overall 2010-11 APS Teacher of the Year honor. (Watch her acceptance speech here.) Leslie Harrell-Tumlin, a fourth-grade teacher at Warren T. Jackson Elementary, was honored as the Elementary School Teacher of the Year; Hamilton was honored as the Middle School Teacher of the Year; and Wanda Brown-Cook, an English teacher at Carver’s School of the Arts, was honored as the High School Teacher of the Year.

As APS Teacher of the Year for 2010-11, Hamilton automatically becomes a candidate for Georgia Teacher of the Year, which will be decided later in the school year. Outside of the classroom, Hamilton coaches the award-winning Brown Middle School cheerleaders.

“Congratulations to the teachers of the year from every school and to the three finalists for district-wide teacher of the year,” said APS Deputy Superintendent for Curriculum & Instruction Dr. Kathy Augustine. “Thank you for looking our students in the eyes and making a difference in how they see the world and for using your unique power today to shape what they will become tomorrow.”

Catalina Sibilsky of APS’ Department of Learning Excellence presided over the ceremonies. The South Atlanta Educational Complex’s Color Guard presented the colors. Ann Cramer of the IBM Corporation served as keynote speaker. Deputy Superintendent of Curriculum & Instruction Dr. Kathy Augustine introduced the keynote speaker. The Urban Youth Harp Ensemble, directed by Carolyn Lund of Carver’s School of the Arts, performed at the event. The Atlanta Board of Education was represented by Chair Khaatim Sherrer El, Courtney English (who delivered greetings), Yolanda K. Johnson and Cecily Harsch-Kinnane.

The Teacher of the Year selection process is a rigorous one. Each teacher is nominated and selected by their peers from the school l evel. They’re required to submit a packet where they respond in writing to the following subjects — philosophy of education, discuss current issues and trends in education — describe how to improve the teaching profession, list their involvement in professional-development activities, and explain how they would serve as spokesperson for APS Teacher of the Year. They’re screened at the School Reform Team level and are interviewed at the semifinalist and finalist phases.  The last phase of the process is a classroom observation and a personal interview by central level staff members.

Each APS grade-level Teacher of the Year received tributes from some of their students as well as their SRT executive director at the ceremony. Tumlin received a tribute from Jackson Elementary students Claire Hadley Benton and Kourtney Tate as well as SRT-4 Executive Director Tamara Cotman. Hamilton received a tribute from Brown Middle students Seleema Gonzalez, Dwight Showers and DeVaughn Davis as well as SRT-1 Executive Director Sharon Davis Williams. Brown-Cook received a tribute from Carver School of the Arts students Taylor Jackson and Brooklyn Fite as well as Office of High Schools Executive Director Randolph Bynum.

Shirley Wright of the Professional Association of Georgia Educators presented the finalists with $100 gift certificates. Representatives from Coca-Cola Bottling Company provided engraved plaques to each Teacher of the Year throughout the district. School Box, Inc. gave $25 gift cards to the finalists. The Target Corporation provided each Teacher of the Year with a $50 gift card.

Complete list of the individual teachers of the year, by school reform team and then grade level, after the jump …


October 20, 2010 at 12:05 am 6 comments

Coretta Scott King YWLA students get ‘pearls of wisdom’

Students at Coretta School King Young Women’s Leadership Academy wore evening dresses this morning as the staff presented them with “pearls of wisdom” necklaces in recognition of their transition to high school.  While not a traditional graduation ceremony per se, it was a colorful event on this last day of the school year for most Atlanta Public Schools students. SCLC President the Rev. Bernice King, daughter of Martin Luther and Coretta Scott King, served as keynote speaker, while APS  Superintendent Dr. Beverly L. Hall also spoke to students. Hall thanked the Atlanta Board of Education members in attendance, as well as community partners including the Atlanta cluster of The Links Inc. and Spelman College, and CSKYWLA Principal Melody Morgan and SRT-4 Executive Director Tamara Cotman.

“It’s hard to believe that we’re already celebrating the first class of students to complete their middle school studies and ‘step up’ to high school,” Dr. Hall said. “What a difference three years can make!”

May 25, 2010 at 8:05 pm Leave a comment

Morris Brandon Elementary celebrates 2010 opening of Primary Center (K-1)

From L-R: Reuben McDaniel, Nancy Meister, Peter Settelmayer, Dr. Beverly L. Hall, Karen Evans, Dr. Kathy Augustine, Emmett Johnson

UPDATE: Watch video of the First Grade Choir performance here. Visit photo gallery here.

APS and other distinguished officials cut the ribbon Thursday on the Morris Brandon Elementary‘s Primary Center that opened at the start of the year and serves the growing Buckhead school’s 200-plus kindergarteners and first-graders. The ceremony capped off an unprecedented year of school openings and renovations that totaled about $265 million — thanks to a great degree to the special-purpose local-option sales tax (or SPLOST).

“Thanks to taxpayers’ support, in the span of two months Atlanta Public Schools has celebrated the opening or renovation of five buildings,” said APS Superintendent Dr. Beverly L. Hall, who later quoted the author Thomas Kempis when she said, “‘The loftier the building, the deeper the foundation that must be laid’ … This is further evidence of the fact that parents are choosing Brandon as their first school of choice. And we could not have done it without you, the taxpayer, for helping fund this building. I hope you know your feedback was heard loudly and clearly.”

Dr. Hall was joined by Atlanta Board of Education members Nancy M. Meister (District 4, which includes Brandon), Emmett Johnson and Reuben McDaniel; APS Deputy Superintendent Dr. Kathy Augustine; SRT-4 Executive Director Tamara Cotman; Lisa Borders, representing Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed; Brandon Principal Karen Evans; and Brandon PTA co-president Laurie Campbell.


May 6, 2010 at 3:46 pm 1 comment

Franklin Lecture Series serves as inspiration for women’s history at CSKYWLA

(UPDATE: For more photos, visit Scott King’s gallery here in the Media Gallery.)

Attendees at the third-annual Shirley Clarke Franklin Lecture Series, held Friday morning at the Coretta Scott King Young Women’s Leadership Academy, were treated to a doubleheader of women’s history. Not only did students, faculty, staff and other guests enjoy an inspiring lecture from guest speaker Dr. Christine King Farris — the only surviving sibling of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. — but they also were treated to a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the school’s new building that opened in January.

Dr. Farris told the audience she was proud “to have the opportunity to speak at a school dedicated to someone who I loved like a sister. This is the first and most significant thing that has been named after a woman who served Atlanta so well.”

King Farris challenged students to live the legacy that Coretta Scott King shared with her husband: working hard for peace, social justice and non-violence. She also made reference to March as National Women’s History Month, saying “We are truly writing women back into history!”

After her speech, Dr. Farris and Franklin fielded questions from students. CSKYWLA sixth-grader Radiant Harrison asked what advice Dr. Farris gives her Spelman College students.

“Take your work seriously, and whatever you do, do it to the best of your ability,” Dr. Farris said. “And two, remember those who made it possible for you to attend Spelman, and to give something back.” Another student asked Franklin what advice she would give her successor, newly elected Mayor Kasim Reed. Franklin repeated advice given to her by former mayors, including Andrew Young, who was in the audience with his wife. “They told me to listen to my head, and listen to my heart,” she said.

The ribbon-cutting ceremony that preceded the lecture served as a family reunion of sorts. Two of Dr. King’s children — Southern Christian Leadership Conference President-elect Bernice King and activist Martin Luther King III — and several other relatives joined in the ceremony. King III and his wife, Arndrea, helped their daughter, Yolanda Renee King, cut the ribbon as the crowd cheered.

APS Superintendent Dr. Beverly L. Hall and Atlanta Board of Education Chair LaChandra Butler Burks also spoke at the event, as well as CSKYWLA Principal Melody Morgan, Bernice King, CSKYWLA PTSA President Barbara Mobley, SRT-4 Executive Director Tamara Cotman, and Brian Newell of CD Moody Construction, which supervised construction of the school’s new building.

March 12, 2010 at 6:00 pm 1 comment

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