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Vicki Parker is a graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education. Ms. Parker began her career in education as a third-grade teacher at Simpson Central School. She taught in Simpson County for three years before moving to Rankin County School District where she continued teaching third-grade. While teaching in Rankin County, she served as grade chair for her grade as well as a mentor teacher to new teachers. In 2011, Ms. Parker returned to Simpson County School District where she taught fifth grade ELA at Simpson Central. After two years of ELA, she was moved to fifth and sixth grade Science and Social Studies. She is currently in her 18th year of teaching. Ms. Parker is a member of the Mississippi Professional Educators, Mississippi Science Teachers Association, and the National Science Teachers Association. She currently serves on the Science Curriculum Committee for Simpson County School District. Ms. Parker has attended numerous conferences and events to help her stay up-to-date on current teaching practices. She is continuously seeking ways to increase her knowledge of the content she is teaching. She is currently seeking a Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction at Mississippi College. Ms. Parker says that this journey has challenged her to think differently in meeting the needs of her students. Ms. Parker was chosen as the 2018-2019 Teacher of the Year for Simpson Central School as well as Simpson County’s Teacher of the year.
Ms. Parker believes her most significant contributions to education has derived from her role as a mom. Being a mom to her twelve-year-old Autistic son, Brody, has helped her to reach a level of teaching that includes a personal understanding and knowledge that each child is different and learns at a different rate and in different ways. She firmly believes that every student can be successful in his/her own way. Her students understand that she expects the best from each of them and will push them until they have given their best. Throughout her years of teaching, Ms. Parker has strived to develop meaningful relationships with her students. These relationships have led to students that are excited to learn. Her students are excited to attend her class daily. They understand that she wants the best for them and wants to see them succeed, not only in the classroom but in life.
Ms. Parker’s feels that her greatest accomplishment in teaching is the ability to take her students, who have never had a science class, and get them so excited about science that they want to learn. Her students strive to be their best in her class. Out of five years teaching fifth-grade science, her students have performed well above the state average each year. In the 2018-2019 school year, her students scored in the top five in the state with a 97% proficient/advanced rate.
Dr. Antionette Harvey-Woodall
Simpson County School District
Simpson Central School
Dr. Antionette Woodall is currently the Principal of Simpson Central School in Pinola, MS, where she is in her third year as instructional leader. Under her tenure, Simpson Central School has maintained a Level B academic rating. She notes that it is a very rewarding experience to be able to have students enroll as kindergartners and watch them advance through the years to become eighth graders. It is clear that the teachers at SCS serve a variety of learners through the use of varied instructional materials adopted at the district level. There is no ordinary day when you arrive on her campus, but you can expect to be amazed at the quality of learning and instruction that occurs. When Dr. Woodall reflects on what makes her school unique, she notes that the hard work that her teachers do on a daily basis allows the students and community at large to reap the rewards. Their teachers are able to build a rapport with their students and parents, and teachers get to know them on a personal level, which makes for a well-rounded partnership.
Dr. Woodall began her career in the Jackson Public School district and Memphis City Schools, where she served as an English teacher, Academic Coach for Language Arts, Library Media Specialist, Dual Enrollment instructor of English, and Adjunct Instructor of English at Jackson State University. She began her administrative career with the Simpson County School District in 2014, at Magee High School serving as Assistant Principal; during that time, she also served as Interim Principal from February 2015 through June 2015. She became principal at Simpson Central in July of 2016.
Dr. Woodall firmly believes that education is vital to establishing a strong foundation on which understanding is based. Her goal as an educator is to encourage both teachers and students to expand their own personal limits. By expanding their previous knowledge base, and exploring new, uncharted territory, students increase their college or career opportunities for future success. Students must commit to a level of performance that challenges them to reach their full potential. She knows firsthand that teaching is a profession that requires dedication and determination to succeed, so teachers must be willing to use varied instructional strategies and differentiated instruction to meet all learners’ needs.
In her school community, she has forged a partnership for her students to gain access to the Georgetown Library in Copiah County. Dr. Woodall also takes advantage of representing her school through the community via speaking engagements. She has also established a partnership with the Simpson County Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. This has benefited her school in a number of ways from providing Christmas outreach, back to school giveaways, and a fully stocked clothes closet.
As an educator, Dr. Woodall has been afforded many professional learning opportunities over the years, and she has consistently put student achievement at the forefront of all those experiences. She considers her greatest contribution to be her willingness to learn and embrace the latest trends that are related to her profession. Serving as an English II teacher, she learned the importance of understanding test design and ways to help students make meaning of challenging content. When she served as Academic Coach, she was able to help seniors who were in jeopardy of not graduating go through a rigorous remediation boot camp to gain the necessary skills needed to pass the English II state test. Additionally, through a school-wide literacy initiative, she was able to be named a Model and Master Classroom teacher for her progress through the Renaissance Learning Accelerated Reader Program. What has been by far the most rewarding is being able to establish a rapport with both teachers, students, and parents from diverse backgrounds. Former students, colleagues, and educators continue to use her expertise as a support system for future growth. She believes that the practices that she has used in both her classroom and her school has helped make a difference in the students and teachers’ lives in a positive manner.