BLYTHEVILLE, AR (KAIT) - Damien Myers, a biology and chemistry teacher at KIPP Blytheville College Preparatory School, was selected as our April Teacher of the Month.
Myers is a Missouri native with 8 years of teaching under his belt. He has spent the last 2 years at Blytheville KIPP.
In a nomination letter, a parent described Myers as a no-nonsense type of teacher that motivates students to pursue higher education.
That was evident as Myers let us know he was happy to see us but he wanted to remain focused on the lesson for the day.
"I was extremely excited," Myers said. "I'm very overwhelmed and very happy that I was nominated for this award. It just shows that work that I'm doing here is positive. It is needed in the community and, more importantly, it's great to be appreciated."
As an educator, Myers said one of his main goals was to prepare this generation for the future.
"I'm very passionate about it because it's something that someone never did for me," Myers said. "Nobody ever sat me down and said 'Hey, these are the steps you need to take to be successful in college' and really here, it's more so these are the steps you need to take to be successful after you graduate from college because that's the general expectation. The idea is to instill those character values in our students, to take it a step further and make sure I'm talking to students' families and keeping up with what they're doing in the community and not just here in school. We're trying to become a part of their lives as much as possible."
When it comes to getting help in the classroom, Meyers said he likes for his students to be honest with themselves so they can get the help they need.
Outside of just being their teacher, Myers said he values being a strong, positive role model in their lives.
"I want my students to know that a lot of things they see are very abnormal," Myers said. "It's normal to have that male in your life. It's normal for that male to actually take care of their kids. It's normal for that male to go to work and provide for their family. And it's normal for that male to have the education to help you progress."
Myers said playing that role is especially important to him when it comes to reaching his male students, teaching them responsibility and the values they need to become successful.
"Society thinks one way of you," Meyers said. "You can either prove society right or you can prove society wrong. By tomorrow, you're definitely going to do one or the other, so you need to be prepared either way."
Myers doesn't plan on quitting teaching any time soon, he said he plans to continue grooming students to work hard and push towards their goals.
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