Note: The following article has been provided by Georgia Highlands College. –KtE
Education duo. Husband and wife. Georgia Highlands College Alumni. Deputy director. Teacher. And the list goes on and on for Robert and April Cummings.
The path to becoming outstanding members of the Floyd County community all began at Georgia Highlands College (then Floyd College) where Robert and April both got their start, leading to a long career in the Floyd County school system. .
After attending GHC (then Floyd College) in the late 1980s and graduating with a BA in Journalism from the University of Georgia (UGA), April worked for News Publishing Company for 10 years in local advertising and business. It wasn’t until she and her husband Robert had their first child that she fell in love with education.
“I constantly read to our son, and teaching him during those early years as he developed early literacy skills captivated me,” April said. “We decided that I should explore a new career and get a graduate degree in early childhood education.”
April then spent 15 years teaching elementary and elementary school students, shaping who she would become in her administrative role.
Since July 2017, she has been Deputy Principal of Johnson Elementary School (JES).
Throughout the day, April’s goal is to focus on what is best for JES students and to support teachers in ensuring that students receive the best opportunities for academic and emotional growth.
Focusing on this goal, April is often found in the classroom helping a teacher, in the hallway helping a class during transitions, in a meeting with a parent, planning educational supports for students within communities. Professional Learning (PLC) from JES, or working with the principal and school staff to develop and maintain a rigorous and positive school climate.
This past summer, April also served as the administrator of Floyd County School’s first summer school program for elementary and secondary school students across the system.
“On rare occasions I have even been seen wrestling in an inflatable sumo costume or serving as a human sundae with our principal in the gym as part of a fundraising award for the Johnson School. Elementary, ”April said. “While educating children is serious and important work, succeeding and growing together as lifelong learners should also be fun. “
She said her time at GHC prepared her academically and helped her prepare to manage her studies and work. In addition to being a student, April worked in the GHC admissions office, gaining valuable experience working with and for others while helping them be successful.
“Georgia Highlands College has provided me with the foundation for academic success and I will always be grateful,” April said.
In the early 1990s, after serving in the Air Force and continuing as a reservist, Robert enrolled at Georgia Highlands College (then Floyd College).
“The GHC was conveniently located near my home, provided a schedule that allowed me to work full time and graduate, while continuing to serve in the Air Force Reserve,” said Robert. “After graduating from GHC as an Associate, I was able to make a smooth transition to Shorter College and pursue my Bachelor of Education.”
Robert has been with Coosa High School since 1996 as a social studies teacher before assuming his current position as Senior Special Education Teacher. Every day, Robert works with students who benefit from academic support services as part of their educational project for success.
“I am able to work one-on-one with students and help with particular content areas, and I also work with small groups of students both to help them reinforce and clarify concepts. and skills, alternating in different classrooms throughout the day to support both the students and the general education teacher, ”said Robert.
Robert also meets regularly with teachers, parents and administrators to develop and monitor educational plans and serves as a point of contact for many parents, establishing a direct line of communication while ensuring that students are progressing towards their goals.
“I have always believed that developing these essential relationships is an investment in the future of every student,” said Robert.
Robert originally entered the field of education with the aspiration to serve students both inside and outside the classroom and is grateful to be able to take on multiple coaching roles. while teaching students. In late winter or early spring, Robert can be found on the golf course, serving as the CHS golf coach.
He said the reward of serving students continues long after the end of the school year or sports season when meeting with alumni outside of the CHS and hearing a an update on their life or a reminder of a specific lesson that may have marked them or made them appreciate the story. once they’ve taken her class.
“The greatest reward as an educator is knowing that the time you invest in a student has such a lasting positive impact,” said Robert.