Eighth grade Language Arts teacher Darlene Caffey has been named Stephenson Middle School’s “Teacher of the Year.”
“I was ecstatic when I heard the announcement,” the DeKalb County teacher said. The school went all out. They had the band march behind me down the halls playing ‘Hail to the Chief.’ Students and staff were on both sides applauding and screaming, while previous Teachers of the Year walked beside me and behind me. It was basically a mini parade.”
Caffey, who has taught Language Arts in Augusta, Valdosta, Illinois and even Japan, said she was very honored to be a Stephenson teacher.
“I answered a series of questions similar to an essay format and now I’m waiting for a response from the district on what comes next,” said Caffey, who has been teaching for 23 years. “I hope to be named Middle School Teacher of the Year for the district at the annual banquet for teachers, which will be held at the beginning of the next school year, around August.”
When she is not at Stephenson teaching 110 students daily, Caffey, an inspirational poet, is learning herself. She is attending classes to become a minister at Voices of Faith Ministries in Stone Mountain. She also operates her own publishing company, Destiny Productions and Publishing, LLC.
“I love teaching because I get the opportunity to incorporate so many options to learn. I write poems and songs and try to help students learn in different creative ways,” said Caffey, who is currently working on her autobiography, Left for Dead but Would not Die. “I will never have a dull day in my classroom. All students are capable of learning. We just have to realize what learning technique works best for them.
Caffey has a degree in journalism from Alabama State University and a master’s degree in Middle Grades Education from Walden University.
Stephenson Middle School Principal Obelia Hall says she is honored to have teachers like Caffey on her staff.
“We want to continue to congratulate Darlene for being our Teacher of the Year for 2013-2014. Darlene is a teacher who is creating critical readers, strong writers and great thinkers,” said Hall. “The kids are excited for her and the staff here is excited as well. We wish her the best on the county level.”