BERLIN – In a surprise announcement during a music
assembly on May 8, Cedar Chapel Special School Teacher Victoria Radford learned
that she had been selected as the 2007 Wal-Mart Teacher of the Year for
When Cedar Chapel Principal Rae Record made the
announcement in front of the school’s faculty, staff and students, T.J.
Frampton, one of Radford’s former students, cheered, “You are awesome to the
max!” Simultaneously, student Michael Knight hugged his teacher, while the
music room filled with cheers and applause.
Pocomoke Wal-Mart Assistant Manager Kathi French presented
Radford with a $1,000 check to be used by the school, $100 Wal-Mart gift card
for Radford, and framed certificates. Radford also received balloons and
bouquets of roses. In addition, each Cedar Chapel teacher received a supply box
titled, “Inspiring Tomorrow’s Leaders,” filled with various teaching supplies.
Each year, Wal-Mart stores across the country place a
Wal-Mart Teacher of the Year ballot box in stores, soliciting nominations for
local Teachers of the Year. Ballot boxes typically are placed in stores for a
four-week period between January and February. Each store selects a Teacher of
the Year based on the content of the nominations.
“We are a
community-based store,” said French. “We review the nominations and choose an
outstanding teacher who best serves the educational needs of our community’s
According to French, the response for Radford was very
significant and meaningful. “Ms. Radford touches a lot of lives,” said French.
“She received numerous nominations from students, parents, community members,
and even teachers at other schools. It was an overwhelming response.”
When asked what contributes to her success in the
classroom, Radford praised the attitudes of her students.
“I am inspired by my students,” Radford said. “My kids
love to come to school each day; they love being here, and that makes me feel
good. I can’t imagine doing anything else.”
Radford complimented Wal-Mart on their community focus and
their support of education, as did Dr. Jon Andes, Superintendent of Schools.
“Ms. Radford makes a positive difference in the lives of our students,” said
Andes. “We commend Wal-Mart for recognizing that teachers are paramount to the
future success of a community. Teachers are educating the next generation of
business leaders, and we deeply appreciate Wal-Mart’s support in this effort.”
local Wal-Mart Teachers of the Year are eligible to apply for the Wal-Mart
State Teacher of the Year award. State winners will receive $10,000 for their
school; in addition, state winners will automatically be entered in the
Wal-Mart National Teacher of the Year program.