Nov 2, 2012

Support Person of the Year finalists

Orange County Public Schools has chosen five employees as finalists for the 2013 Support Person of the Year. The winner will be announced during the OCPS Support Person of the Year Awards Ceremony in January 2013. This year’s finalists are:
(clockwise: Angela Ross, school clerk, West Orange High; Sheryl Scherr, school registrar, Blankner K-8; Lori Orr, school bookkeeper, Windy Ridge K-8;  Amerencia Young, Title 1 Parental Involvement Coordinator, Washington Shores Elementary; Carol Feiner, paraprofessional, Glenridge Middle) 
Carol Feiner, Glenridge Middle School, is a paraprofessional for the severely handicapped. She is described as loving and patient. Carol says her goal in life is to help her students and adults to achieve more independence in school and the community. Her co-workers say she tutors and works with students on their lessons, accompanies them into inclusive classrooms, and teaches while modeling behaviors to help her students manage the hurdle of “fitting in.” Outside of school, Carol volunteers with Special Olympics teaching sailing, volleyball, and basketball to adults.
Lori Orr, Windy Ridge K-8 School, is the school bookkeeper with a near-perfect auditing record for nearly a decade. Her co-workers say she is the true definition of a perfectionist. It is Lori’s job to keep everyone on top of financial matters for the school. Before coming to work for Orange County Public Schools Lori was a volunteer with the PTA and won the OCPS Volunteer of the Year award. She is very dedicated to the success of her school and jumps in whenever she is needed such as lunch duty, holiday fundraisers, or serving hotdogs and popcorn during school events.
Angela Ross, West Orange High School, is a school clerk who goes above and beyond to help students succeed. Not only does she assist the assistant principal but she also works in the school’s college and career center where her work is said to be invaluable to the students of West Orange. Her work has helped produce a record number of students attending a two or four-year university. Her co-workers say she treats each student as if they were her own. Before becoming an OCPS employee, she was a West Orange parent and Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) volunteer.
Sheryl Scherr, Blankner K-8 School, is a registrar but her co-workers say her duties far surpass her title description. As a registrar she must keep track of student registrations, school schedules, certifications, and shot records. She is also the school’s homeless liaison and she works closely with students who are deaf or have hearing impairments. She makes sure students arrive and dismiss safely every day. Sheryl says she has a special place in her heart for underdogs, and because of this she makes a conscience effort to notice kids who struggle either academically or socially. 
Amerencia Young, Washington Shores Elementary, is the school’s Title 1 Parental Involvement Coordinator. Amerencia makes sure parents are recognized through special events such as, Muffins for Moms, Donuts for Dads, and Grandparent’s Day. She also ensures that the parenting closet is filled with needed clothing for children, and helps in the kindergarten classrooms to assist students. One of the highlights of her life is when she and her husband travel to Rhode Island each year to award scholarships to high school students in memory of her son, a police officer, killed in the line of duty.
The person chosen as the Orange County Public Schools Support Person of the Year will be considered for the Florida School-Related Employee of the Year. That is the state program which honors outstanding support personnel for their contributions to schools and districts. Support personnel are essential to the successful operation of a school or district office. Nominees demonstrate exceptional skill and dedication in the performance of their jobs, thereby earning them the respect and admiration of students, teachers, administrators, co-workers, and parents.