Two Pender County educators recognized for work
Eighth grade language arts teacher Connie Batch-Helder just received the greatest honor of her career. “I don’t have all of these degrees or titles, I’m a career teacher,” she said. “I’ve done this my whole life. My mother taught, my grandmother taught, it goes back to 1911.”
Batch-Helder has been a teacher for more than twenty years. After transferring from the New Hanover County school system to Pender, she is being recognized for the impact she has on her students.
“I actually prayed to God to send me where I was needed,” Batch-Helder said.
In addition to teaching from the heart, Batch-Helder also has an emotional connection to her students and their needs. Along with the help of her niece Haylea, Batch-Helder created a community closet at West Pender Middle School.
Through donations, she has collected clothing, and necessary items for children and adults – and it’s all free. Batch-Helder wanted to give back to a community that she said has given her so much.
“You do not have to be wealthy, you do not have to be poor, it is for everybody to come, and use,” she explained. “That’s the whole intent, so that all of our students have clothes.”
Pender County also named Trask High School’s Principal of the Year. He said fostering student-faculty relationships is the key to a successful school.
“We want our students to be challenged, we want them to work hard, we want them to be successful once they leave school,” Principal Steven Sullivan said.
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