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The recipient of the SMS (Sweetwater Middle School) Teacher of the Year for 2012-2013 was Shaunna Cleckler. She was also named the SISD (Sweetwater Independent School District) Secondary Teacher of the Year for the past school year.
Cleckler is a sixth grade Social Studies and G/T (Gifted and Talented) teacher. Out of the 25 years that she has been teaching, all but four of them have been spent at SISD.
Cleckler earned her degree in Elementary Education as a reading specialist from Abilene Christian University. She is also a member of the TCTA (Texas Classroom Teachers Association).
In addition, she is a member of the Fourth and Elm Church of Christ. Cleckler has also participated in the local Jump-a-Thon and Walk-a-Thon, which benefit the American Heart Association.
While she believes that all kids deserve an education, Cleckler feels that education exceeds reading, math, science and history. She cites the importance of the subjects, but "educating students about dedication, dependability, work ethic and decision making is honestly more important."
"I believe that my job as a teacher is to nurture and encourage students to fulfill their potential," said Cleckler. "I pride myself on teaching the 'whole' child."
When children leaves her class, Cleckler wants them to have confidence to succeed not only in school, but in life as well. She wants her students to know how to balance work and play--"to laugh everyday and work hard"--and to be confident enough to try new things, whether it results in success or a setback.
"I hope that my influence, as well as my teaching," said Clecker, "helps my students become successful, productive and happy adults."