Even with 10 years of teaching under her belt, Deanne is always seeking new ways to bring creativity to her classroom, understanding it as not only a core value of Manchester but also as a higher-level thinking skill for her students. She fosters creativity in her classroom in many ways. She uses collaborative learning as a method of teaching teamwork and accountability. Because of this, her classroom runs itself. She picks high interest work products for student to produce while allowing room for choice. She supports all learners, no matter their level, by providing targeted instruction at their level. She gives all students the ability to be creative no matter how low or high they may be performing compared to grade level standard. Deanna exemplifies collaboration at Verplanck. Despite being involved on many committees (Career Day, PTA Liaison, and Running Club) in the school community and her positive relationship with families, Deanna provides a model for all teachers on how to run a professional learning community. She is not afraid of feedback, nor is afraid to give suggestions and tough love to teachers. She is a positive listening ear in a time of need, and has plenty of professional wisdom to share. She commands her classroom despite any challenge with ease, as her students revere her as a warm, demanding leader. Deanna has the courage to accept new challenges as well as provide feedback in times when others may not feel comfortable. Deanna holds a high bar for her students. She fosters of culture of excellence in the school community and leads by example. She expects excellence from her students, from her teammates, and from her mentees, and holds all parties accountable. Her passion for teaching and learning and her love for her students, along with a mastery of craft, make her Verplanck’s Teacher of the Year.
~ PRINCIPAL NICHOLAS JONES JR.