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Educators named Master Teachers

LAWRENCEVILLE - Six educators in Gwinnett County Public Schools have earned the Master Teacher certification, Gov. Sonny Perdue announced Tuesday.

Perdue said 57 teachers in Georgia earned the designation this year. The Master Teacher Certification Program, coordinated by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission, provides statewide recognition to certified public school teachers who have at least three years of teaching experience and who consistently demonstrate instructional excellence through their students' achievement, according to a news release.

The Gwinnett teachers who earned the certification are Sonjyia Faye Bryant of Duluth Middle School, Denise Trosky Buckelew of Creekland Middle School, Tamara Nicole Candis of Parsons Elementary School, Melinda Nicholson Lewis of Alton C. Crews Middle School, William B. Lewis of Creekland Middle School and Kim Michelle White of Duluth Middle School.

"These 57 teachers join the nearly 300 Master Teachers before them who have clearly demonstrated their expertise in helping our children achieve at higher levels," Perdue said. "They are masters at inspiring students to learn, and I'm proud to recognize them for their outstanding work in one of our most honorable professions."

The certification qualifies teachers to earn a stipend for mentoring new teachers or serving as academic coaches who use instructional release time to promote effective professional development practices among colleagues and make recommendations to improve schools and student learning, the news release states.

"It's great to hear that our teachers are being recognized as some of the very best in Georgia," said Jorge Quintana, spokesman for Gwinnett County Public Schools. "We certainly think they are the best. When we hear that from outside, it reaffirms the great work they are doing in the classroom. Our teachers work very hard to make sure Gwinnett children are learning at their full potential. We are extremely proud of the teachers the state is recognizing."