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Four New Hanover County educators recognized for their work

READ MORE: Four New Hanover County educators recognized for their work
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Out of dozens of applicants, three teachers and one New Hanover County principal are being recognized for their work in school. There comes a time when a teacher's outstanding work in the classroom is noted by their peers. More than 40 educators in New Hanover County were nominated to become the 2008-2009 Teachers of the Year. After a lengthy interview process, it came down to four. With 13 years in education, Ogden fourth-grade teacher, Jenny Leeds always believed teaching was her calling. "While I love teaching, this has certainly just put wind in my sails. I know that I can continue on for many more years just with this accomplishment alone, said Leeds. Christine Wegmann knew she wanted to become a teacher since the 2nd grade. Now as a language arts teacher at Myrtle Grove Middle School, she says teaching is more than passing on lessons but shaping an individual. Wegmann said, "A lot of times teaching is not just about the curriculum that a lot of what we are teaching them is not just the actual knowledge and skill, it's how to interact with each other and how to function in a group and in society." Myrtle Grove Middle School student, Brantlee Boone said, "She is an all around great teacher." Jon Rinka is no stranger to recognition. After thirty years in education, Rinka has been named Teacher of the Year twice before. "Here I am with thirty years of work, whether I would get the award or not it wouldn't matter to me personally but it's nice to see people recognize this as an important profession,” said Rinka. And last but not least, Lachawn Smith has been named Principal of the Year. Smith is being honored for her contribution to the students of Murray Middle School. "Education, I believe, is the most rewarding field there is and that everyone is touched by a teacher,” Smith said. Both John Rinka and Lachawn Smith will go on to represent New Hanover County schools at the regional level and possibly advance to the state level. All four of those educators combined have over 70 years of experience.

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Thank you

Congratulations to all for your outstanding work.