The Board of Education at its Oct. 12 meeting honored five Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) staff members for their commitment to the school system and student success. Each month, the Board honors staff members chosen by their school principals for recognition who demonstrate their dedication to teaching and learning.
Honored by the Board on Oct. 12 were Elizabeth Simmons, Kimberly Gillum, Jessica Greenewald, Jeana Stanley and Dr. Beverly Hoy.
Simmons is a fifth-grade teacher at C. Paul Barnhart Elementary School where she is committed to providing her students with high quality instruction coupled with the support needed for them to reach their full academic potential. The culture in her classroom is based on high expectations for effort and achievement. Simmons doesn’t stop at only teaching students. Last year she held virtual tutoring sessions for parents to ensure students were getting academic support at home while they couldn’t be in the classroom for face-to-face instruction. Simmons goes about her work with humility and is quick to share credit for victories with students, families and colleagues. “Her leadership as a fifth-grade team lead results in a culture of collaboration, respect and positive energy,” Barnhart Principal Brian King, Ed.D., said. “Mrs. Simmons is a truly gifted educator.”
Gillum is a 19-year teaching veteran with the last four years spent at Dr. Gustavus Brown Elementary School. She’s a fourth-grade teacher and has been the fourth-grade team leader since 2018. Gillum has established a strong classroom culture and builds relationships with her students and their parents. In 2019, Gillum planned an end-of-year celebration for the fourth grade that included events and activities. The celebration was so well received that parents and students came to look forward to it and were disappointed in 2020 when it was canceled due to the pandemic. She has been active on school committees including the PBIS committee, the school safety committee and is the chairwoman of the academic committee at Dr. Brown. Outside of school, Gillum is an active volunteer for nonprofit organizations.
A fourth-grade teacher at T.C. Martin Elementary School, Greenewald is trusted by her students who build meaningful relationships with her. “As an inclusion teacher, that’s not always easy,” Martin Principal Todd Wonderling said. “Some of our students have a difficult time trusting and building relationships with adults. The relationships Ms. Greenewald builds in one year usually takes others many years.” Teaching students reading and math is one of her superpowers, Wonderling said. “When combined with her ability to build trust and relationships, Ms. Greenewald is able to maximize any student’s true potential.” Her contributions to her students were honored by the Charles County Special Education Citizens Advisory Committee. “The bonds that have been made this year between student and staff are life changing,” wrote the family of one of Greenewald’s students. Another wrote that Greenewald “shows up every day with great enthusiasm, a genuine desire and determination to meet the unique needs and personality of our child.”
Stanley is the Instructional Resource Teacher at John Hanson Middle School. She is heavily involved in math programming and interventions. Hanson Principal Ben Kohlhorst said he and Stanley worked together teaching math at Theodore G. Davis Middle School. Her work ethic has followed her to Hanson. “She works until the job is done, even if it means working into the evening,” Kohlhorst said. Beyond that, her role impacts all of Hanson with Stanley serving a primary role in creating the master schedule and intervention schedules, as well as those for special education and instructional assistants. She even oversees the bell schedule. “She is the hidden engine that helps John Hanson run smoothly,” Hanson Principal Ben Kohlhorst said. “Her expertise is invaluable.”
Hoy, the general school psychologist at Henry E. Lackey High School, has been with CCPS since 1988, starting at Lackey in 1994. “For the past 27 years, Dr. Hoy’s dedication to all students is unparalleled to any, as her heart has an unlimited capacity to help students and staff who may be experiencing mental and emotional challenges,” Lackey Principal Kathy Perriello said. During the 2020-2021 school year, Hoy had to pivot to providing support in a virtual setting. It was a challenge she took on readily. Now that students and staff are back in the building for face-to-face instruction, Hoy continues to provide therapeutic support in group and individual settings. “From grief counseling to trauma recovery, Dr. Hoy is Henry E. Lackey’s resident expert in crisis prevention and intervention,” Perriello said. “She is highly skilled at what she does and is respected by students, parents and staff.”
Charles County Public Schools provides 27,000 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 37 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.
The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Kathy Kiessling, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Nikial M. Majors, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.
CCPS provides nondiscriminatory equal access to school facilities in accordance with its Use of Facilities rules to designated youth groups (including, but not limited to, the Boy Scouts).