An outstanding teacher

Whiteside is RCS Outstanding Elementary Mathematics Teacher for 2013
Aug. 31, 2013 @ 05:25 AM

There’s a whole lot of outstanding math going on at Sunshine Elementary School.

Cheryl Whiteside, 5th grade teacher at Sunshine, was selected as the Rutherford County Schools Outstanding Elementary Mathematics Teacher for 2013.

“When I found out I was very humbled and excited because I know that our county has excellent math teachers,” Whiteside said. “I’m so tickled they chose me this time. I meet with the 5th grade math teachers and sometimes the other grades and I know there are a lot of great ones.”

The award is presented by the North Carolina Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCCTM) and the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. The goal is to recognize and reward teachers who exemplify teaching excellence by motivating students to excel in mathematics. Whiteside was nominated by Sunshine Principal Neil Higgins and then selected as winner by a committee.

“We are very happy and it’s well deserving. She is a true professional and takes her work seriously. She is concerned with the kids and their academics, as well as making them more well-rounded students,” Higgins said. “She comes to work early and stays late. She’s willing to go the extra mile to help her students.”

Whiteside has been teaching for 22 years and has spent 20 of those years teaching math and science at Sunshine.

“I was attracted to math because I just love the exact sciences. That’s one of the reasons I like it,” Whiteside said. “I also love mysteries and solving things so I love getting to that answer and the process of getting to it.”

She said she enjoys teaching 5th grade because the students are still eager too discover new thing.

“They still want to learn and there’s a lot of things in 5th grade that I can teach them that make math clearer for them. There are shortcuts and things that they get excited about,” Whiteside said.

As this year’s recipient, Whiteside will receive one year’s membership in the NCCTM, a personalized award and be recognized at the NCCTM State Conference in Greensboro in October. Her name will also appear in the Fall 2013 issue of the NCCTM journal, the Centroid and on NCCTM’s website.

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