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Education Commission Awards Outstanding Students and Teachers

Post Date:11/02/2018 8:00 AM
Each month during the school year, the Germantown Education Commission honors a teacher and student. Winners are selected from those nominated by parents, students, teachers or school administrators. Youth Excellence Award winners must be a high school senior living in Germantown, but can attend any school. Teacher of the Month award winners must teach in a public or private school within Germantown. Awards are presented monthly during meetings of the Germantown Board of Mayor and Aldermen.

During the October 22 meeting of the Germantown Board of Mayor and Aldermen, the October Teacher of the Month was presented to Mr. Matthew Freeman, a sixth grade STEM, science and math teacher at Riverdale School. Mr. Freeman has been inspiring a passion for science, helping students find their strengths and serving as a male role model for 13 years. His reputation for knowing the curriculum well and understanding each child individually has earned him the respect of parents, students and coworkers. In addition to his classroom duties, Mr. Freeman currently co-sponsors an after school math clinic for sixth graders, serves as the school-wide PLC lead team member and participated in district-wide efforts on the adoption of STEM curriculum. When he isn’t teaching, Mr. Freeman is coaching Riverdale basketball, where he has served as the boy’s varsity and junior varsity head coach since 2013. His love for the outdoors, running and sports led him to coach the Riverdale cross country team and sponsor the intramural club.

In addition, the Board recognized the September Teacher of the Month, Ms. Cathy Young. Ms. Young is an eighth grade language arts teacher at Riverdale School, where she is highly regarded among her peers and parents of her students as inspirational and forward thinking. She is said to have a special gift of relating to middle school students and gaining the utmost respect from them while at the same time ensuring that they are completely prepared for the writing and language arts challenges ahead in high school. During the 16 years she has been a teacher, Ms. Young has continued her education by earning a Masters in Curriculum and Instruction with additional endorsements for School Leadership and Administration. Ms. Young’s commitment to Riverdale extends well beyond the classroom. Last year, she was the sponsor of the school’s first middle school golf team. Ms. Young’s can-do nature benefits the community as well. She has served in her church as a youth group leader, volunteers at soup kitchens and actively pursues GMSD volunteer opportunities.

The Board also recognized the September Youth Excellence Award recipient, Isabella Fraire, a senior at St. Agnes Academy. Isabella has been able to maintain an impressive grade point average and was recently recognized by the National Society of High School Scholars. During her high school career, Isabella has participated as a member of the varsity soccer, track and lacrosse teams and was a member of the Tennessee Olympic Development Soccer Team in 2016 and 2017. Isabella’s ability to balance so many commitments sets her apart from many of her peers. She finds ways to give back to her community in meaningful ways. She became a licensed soccer coach so she could share her love of the game with underprivileged youth. For the past two summers, Isabella has hosted free soccer camps for kids in the Memphis area. She organizes every aspect of the camp - including soliciting volunteers, donations, space and equipment so that participation does not cost families a penny.
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