For many students, summer is a chance to unwind, relax and reset for another year of hitting the books.
Most educators, on the other hand, often spend summers sharpening skills at conferences, workshops and expos.
That was the case for 13 Liberty County educators who attended the 67th annual Georgia Association for Career and Technical Education Summer Leadership Conference and Career Expo, which was July 13-16 at the Cobb Galleria Center in Atlanta.
Liberty County High School early childhood education teacher Dr. Jana Shields was honored at the conference with the Carl Perkins Outstanding Service Award.
Shields, who has been teaching for 13 years, is the adviser of LCHS’ Family, Career and Community Leaders of America Chapter, which has raised over $2,300 for the Suzie Q Foundation of Hinesville, an organization dedicated to helping women with breast cancer.
The FCCLA also has raised money for the Children’s Miracle Network, collected over 700 pairs of shoes for Soles 4 Souls and collected art supplies for the Backus Children’s Hospital in Savannah.
Over the 2013-14 school year, the FCCLA also raised over $3,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Foundation.
“This service project was close to my heart because one of my FCCLA officers is battling leukemia,” Shields said.
Established in 1985, the Carl Perkins Outstanding Service Award honors the late U.S. representative and recognizes individuals who have demonstrated the same humanitarian concerns exemplified by him, according the Association for Career and Technical Education’s website.
Shields holds a bachelor’s degree in family and consumer science education from Georgia Southern University, a master’s degree from Troy State University and educational-specialist and doctorate degrees from Argosy University.
“I wish to thank my principal, Ms. Paula Scott, for always supporting my fundraising initiatives and my FCCLA members for always going above and beyond to help others,” she added.
Two LCHS agriculture teachers also attended a summer leadership conference for their field, hosted by the Georgia Vocational Agricultural Teachers Association from July 6-9 on Jekyll Island.
LCHS educator Jeci Bohannon was recognized for five years of service as an agriculture teacher.
Keynote speakers at the conference included State School Superintendent Dr. John Barge as well as three candidates running to replace him: Dr. Mike Buck, Richard Woods and state Rep. Alisha Morgan, D–Austell.
Conference attendees participated in professional-learning breakout sessions, elected new representatives for service on the GVATA executive board and recognized members for outstanding service.