September 2014 Winner - Amy Ethridge:( West Lauderdale Elementary School)


Meridian Family of Stations -

Meridian Star Article

By Michael Stewart

West Lauderdale Elementary School kindergarten teacher Amy Ethridge's mother and father were teachers and her grandfather was a school principal.

Although she comes from a family of educators Ethridge, the September Golden Apple Award Teacher of the Month, almost chose another career path.

"Actually, I was going to be an interior designer," Ethridge said.

After Ethridge's father, Andy Armstrong, a former history teacher at Newton, told his daughter he felt she would be an excellent teacher, she changed her mind and began working towards an education degree right out of high school. Going on her 22nd year as a teacher, Ethridge said she made the right choice.

"I have no regrets at all," Ethridge said. "I think this is what God put me here to do. This is a calling and I've answered that calling."

Tuesday morning, some students and staff gathered in the gymnasium at West Lauderdale Elementary School for what Ethridge thought was a school announcement. She suspected something was up as the visiting group of Golden Apple Award sponsors began to file into the gym, accompanied by a cameraman with The Meridian Family of Stations and a photographer from The Meridian Star.

When members of Ethridge's family entered the gym, her suspicions were confirmed.

"I was totally shocked," Ethridge said of learning that she had been selected for the award. "I was wondering who nominated me. I was wondering how long my co-teachers knew about it and didn't tell me and kept it a secret."

Ethridge was presented with a Golden Apple Award trophy, a cash gift of $300 from Golden Apple partners in education, and $1,000 in school supplies from Avery Products and Golden Apple partners in education. She is also in the running for teacher of the year, which will be announced on May 28 and comes with a $2,500 prize and a $2,500 scholarship for a graduating senior of the winning teacher's choice.