CARENCRO — 16 finalists are preparing for the annual Lafayette Education Foundation awards. The teachers were nominated by the community and on January 29th, one teacher will accept the award at a red carpet-style event. KATC highlights each teacher selected for the finals. Juanita Hall is the choir director at Carencro Middle School. She has one simple philosophy.
"They know that I'm not fake with them, and that's the one thing I want to share with all teachers, is that if you show them you're not false, if you show them you care about them being the best, most of them will work so hard to be the best they can," Hall explained.
"And if I'm wrong, they will correct me, they'll say 'Who's not being the right example today? Mama Hall!' Some teachers will be offended by that, but I say, if you allow me to teach you wrong, and you learn wrong, who's wrong?"
Over her 30 years of teaching, Hall has learned that being a teacher goes beyond the classroom.
"It's because of the love that you have for them that encourages them to come back and work not only in the classroom, but their community. And believe in the children, in their community, and put forth the same effort," Hall said.
To her, the LEF award is more than a pat on the back.
"I don't know how many words I can say to them, to thank them for honoring and recognizing teachers, for going above and beyond the duties of being a teacher," Hall said.
Hall was a finalist in 2006 and hopes that this is her year.