Math teacher surprised in classroom with honors

Published: July 6, 2007 | 6495th good news item since 2003

Jessieville High School math teacher Sherman Cutrer was named Teacher of the Year by the Wal-Mart Store on Highway 7.

Wal-Mart’s award is chosen through student nominations. More than 100 nominations were submitted, but community coordinator Debbie Bryant said it was obvious from the start who stood out.

“We have a little box set up for people to nominate and at the end of it, we had a committee read over all the nominations,” Bryant said. “Once we narrowed it down to three, we discussed it with Robert Neilson, our store manager, and he helped us make the decision.

“We pretty much knew that Mr. Cutrer was the one, just by the letters. Some of the letters said the same thing, that they always hated math and that Mr. Cutrer told them once they took his class, they would love it and it turned out to be true.”

Students Sharee Clark and Danton Robertson were instrumental in Cutrer’s award, writing particularly poignant nomination letters. Both wrote on Cutrer’s ability to teach math to those who have always hated the subject.

Cutrer finds a way to make algebra, geometry and trigonometry interesting and fun, say his students and colleagues.

“It’s one of those awards he will tell you he doesn’t deserve,” said Jessieville High School principal Steve Wright. “But he’s an outstanding teacher and the kids love to be in his classes.

“We’re certainly proud of Mr. Cutrer and he is most deserving of this award.”

Superintendent George Foshee said it’s the effort and attention to detail that make Cutrer so well respected.

“He’s a fantastic math teacher,” said Foshee. “It’s because he cares so much about the kids, that’s how he comes across to them and the detail he goes through to make sure they understand.”

Neilson and other employees surprised Cutrer last week in class with cakes, balloons, a “Teacher of the Year” t-shirt, $100 gift card and a $1,000 check made out to Jessieville School in Cutrer’s name.

Because of this honor, Cutrer will now be considered for the statewide Arkansas Teacher of the Year award.

Published in Teachers
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