McDONOUGH — Three finalists are vying for the title of Henry County Schools’ Teacher of the Year and a chance to represent the school district in competing for Georgia Teacher of the Year.
The finalists are Tina McPherson of Stockbridge Elementary, Sheila Thomas-Johnson of Henry County Middle and Barbara Rosolino of Eagle’s Landing High. The winner will be announced at the Oct. 18 “A Harvest of HEROes” celebration at the Henry County Performing Arts Center.
The district will honor 50 school-level Teachers of the Year during the celebration. Organizers will also recognized four school employees in four different categories.
Susan Whitehorn from Ola High will be recognized in the school nutrition category. Elizabeth Webster is a custodian at Hickory Flat Elementary and will be recognized in the service category.
The winner in the district’s support category is Tiffany Price, a special education paraprofessional at Woodland High. Lisa Cox is a bus driver for Eagle’s Landing Middle and will be honored in the transportation category.
Henry’s Teacher of the Year finalists are veteran teachers in the district.
McPherson has been an elementary school teacher for 21 years. She has spent her entire career in the district and teaches kindergarten at Stockbridge Elementary.
“I am thrilled to be selected to represent my school at the county level and feel that becoming a finalist gives me even more opportunity and responsibility to reflect the quality that Stockbridge Elementary and Henry County School System strive for and reach on a daily basis,” said McPherson.
McPherson is from Fort Payne and Montgomery, Ala., and moved to Henry County in 1987. She graduated from Georgia State University with a bachelor’s degree.
Thomas-Johnson was born in Mississippi but grew up in cities throughout the United States and Canada. She earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Mississippi in Oxford and a graduate degree from Loras College in Dubugue, Iowa.
She has taught at the elementary, middle and high school levels throughout her 19-year career. She teaches Georgia history and gifted classes at Henry County Middle.
“The faculty, staff, parents and students of the Henry County Middle School community are in essence my family,” said Thomas-Johnson. “Our relationship embodies the true meaning of the word ‘team.’ To consider it an honor to represent such an amazing composition of people is truly humbling.”
Rosolino, too, was humbled by the honor.
“To be recognized by my peers, my colleagues who actually see what I do in and out of the classroom each day, is quite an honor,” said Rosolino. “I am humbled to be elected as the representative from a very strong, professional staff of teachers at Eagle’s Landing High School.”
Rosolino was raised in Long Island, N.Y., and earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in English from State University of New York at Stony Brook. She has lived in Georgia since 1990.
She is the most experienced of the finalists. She is National Board Certified with 34 years in teaching from middle school up to college. These days she teaches advanced placement literature and composition and Honors English II at Eagle’s Landing High.
“After teaching for so many years, it feels as if the efforts I have made have been recognized and are a testament to the idea that hard work makes a difference, and that the consistent dedication of teachers everywhere should be respected and esteemed,” said Rosolino.