On Friday February 13th, while all our scholars slept in for the beginning of their Mardi Gras break, FirstLine’s staff gathered together in the gym at Arthur Ashe Charter School for a network pep rally! The Theme for the Pep Rally was: The Mystic Krewe of FirstLine presents: The FirstLine Renaissance. In true Krewe tradition, the celebration started with a parade. Each school put together a float that their staff members marched in behind. As the brass music blared and the schoolteachers stomped, the Mardi Gras spirit was infectious throughout the gym. A healthy competition among schools ensued, where they were judged in (3) categories. Everyone showed their FirstLine spirit as they acted out the key messages of the FirstLine Renaissance: Body, Mind and Spirit. After the competition, it was time for the main event of the pep rally: The Inaugural Big Chief Awards.
The Big Chief Awards were created to spotlight teachers and staff who exemplify FirstLine’s core values of Learning, Results, Collaboration, Service, and Fun (the secret value). At the awards ceremony, awards in each area were presented, with (2) winners taking home the service award. The names of the award winners were kept a surprise until the video presentations revealed the winner. When the names of the winners were announced, huge cheers erupted in the bleachers, and winners were prone to being swarmed with hugs and adoration from their peers. As they made their way to the spotlight at the center of the gym, the Big Chiefs (who the awards are named after), were there to present them with a beautiful glass sculpture created by local non-profit organization Ya-Ya.
|Big Chief Award Winners (l to r): Carolyn Trask, Julia Dezen, |
LaJean Hunter, Sivi Domango, Kaitlyn Gaddis, Eileen Bunton
The awards ceremony inspired all FirstLine employees and reminded us of why we do what we do. It showed us just how much we can achieve, and how much stronger we become when we group together as a network. But above all, it showed us that even though everything we do is for the scholars, none of it could happen without the staff. We would like to congratulate the inaugural Big Chief Award Winners on a job well done! Thank You for all that you do!
The Ramona Luke Big Chief of Service Award (Two winners): Carolyn Trask, Langston Hughes Academy, Social Worker; LaJean Hunter, Joseph S. Clark Preparatory High School, Front Office Administrator
The Darcy McKinnon Big Chief of Collaboration Award: Sivi Domango, Arthur Ashe Charter School, Co-Director
The Anthony “Doc” Recasner Big Chief of Learning Award: Eileen Bunton, Samuel J. Green Charter School, Literacy Integration Specialist
The Brenda Benoit Big Chief of Results Award: Julia Dezen, Samuel J. Green Charter School, Fourth Grade Teacher
The Kelly Miranda Big Chief of Fun Award: Kaitlyn Gaddis, Phillis Wheatley (formerly John Dibert) Community School, Kindergarten Teacher
To view all of the Big Chief Award video presentations click THIS LINK.
For photos, click THIS LINK.