"I remember [Cupp] when she was a student teacher at Cartersville High School and she was just one of those special people -- even though she looks like the rest of the students and the cafeteria workers charge her the students' price," Principal Jay Floyd said to laughter of teachers and administrators during a banquet held at Stonewall Manor. "Her maturity and the way she taught from day one was amazing."
Cupp was not present at the banquet due to illness. The Daily Tribune News will follow up with Cupp at a later time.
"Even as a first year teacher ... and you all know this, if you're teaching your curriculum and you've got [students] engaged, you don't have discipline issues and that's what impressed me most about [Cupp] -- she didn't have discipline issues, regardless of the classes she had," Floyd said. "So, with [Cupp], it's not just her knowledge and ability to teach English Language Arts, it is her heart ..."
The banquet recognized all Cartersville nominees, including first-grade teacher Linda Ferguson, Teacher of the Year for Cartersville Primary School; fifth-grade teacher Scott Busby, the honoree from Cartersville Elementary School; and Spanish Education teacher Omar Nunez from Cartersville Middle school.
Principals from each of the schools spoke on behalf of the teachers and each nominee was given $500 for professional development purposes as well as $500 for personal use. The winner, Cupp, received $1,200 for professional development purposes, such as attending a national education conference.
Funding for the event is channeled through the Cartersville Schools Foundation.
One nominee, Ferguson, felt the need to express her appreciation for the honor to the crowd.
"It's hard to find the words to express the gratitude that I know we all feel," Ferguson said. "It's such a blessing to work in this school system."
About the nominees:
Ferguson is in her 10th year with Cartersville schools and her 23rd year in the field of education. She holds a merchandising degree from Auburn University and her early childhood education degree from Mercer University as well as having an endorsement for English as a Second Language on her teaching certificate.
Busby is in his 17th year of teaching, spending the last 13 years at CES. Busby is a graduate of Georgia Southern University where he received his degree in early childhood education and also holds a master's degree from Piedmont College.
Nunez is in his 19th year in education with nine years being spent at CMS. Originally from Panama, Nunez holds an undergraduate degree in Spanish education from Kennesaw State University and one in telecommunications from The University of Georgia.