Teachers make all the difference.
Eboni Harrington just made history as the first Black teacher of the year in Roanoke, VA, WSLS reports.
Harrington first got her start teaching at a charter school in North Carolina. Then, she returned to her hometown of Roanoke to become a seventh-grade math teacher at Lucy Addison Middle School, where she has served the last four years. Now she is being recognized as Roanoke City Public School’s District’s Teacher of the Year. Harrington is only the second Black person and first Black woman to receive the honor.
The committee, RCPS employees, retirees, and last year’s teacher of the year were responsible for choosing the award recipient this year. The committee spoke highly about the significance of Harrington’s work.
“Ms. Harrington’s passion for her students, her resilience in the face of unprecedented challenges, and her unwavering determination exemplify our division’s vision to be a model for urban public education,” the committee said in a statement.
The Roanoke native said she was inspired to become a teacher as a result of her family.
“As the oldest of eight, I always find myself teaching and learning from my siblings daily. I aspire to be a great role model for my siblings by modeling resilience, confidence, and perseverance,"Harrington said. "I developed these characteristics by observing my mother advocate for my brother during a difficult period during his senior year. His privileges to graduate had been revoked, and she fought effortlessly to reinstate his rights to walk. Watching her fight for my brother ignited something in me that reassured my career choice to become a teacher."
As a part of her rewards, being named teacher of the year, Harrington received a $1,000 check from One Federal Credit Union, the sponsor for this year’s award, and will compete for Regional Teacher of the Year.
The teacher of the year went viral last August after she remixed the popular Cardi B and Meg Thee Stallion song, "W.A.P," which gained thousands of views online.
Harrington hopes to continue bettering the lives of her students through her work as a teacher.
“[I want to] empower, encourage, and uplift our youth through mentorship, community engagement activities, and education. Through this platform, I hope to inspire our youth to believe in their aspirations and pull from the resources around them,” Harrington said.
Congratulations, Eboni! Because of you, we can!
Photo Courtesy of WSLS