Laura Potter on being named 2015-2016 Harford County Teacher of the Year! You are an inspiring and influential teacher
to so many. As my term as Harford County
Teacher of the Year comes to a close I have given a lot of time recently to reflect. In years past, I remember reading about the
new Teacher of the Year each spring in the newspaper. I never gave too much thought of what the
honor meant exactly. Being given the
opportunity over the past year to experience the honor, if I had to come up
with one word to sum it all up, I would choose rewarding.
I took the
opportunity to revisit my email folder labeled “Congratulations” the other
day. The contents of the folder warm my
heart over and over again, no matter how many times I reread the messages. It was so meaningful to hear from so many
colleagues, friends, acquaintances, former teachers, and former students from
over the years. Each and every personal
message, whether it contained a paragraph or a line was so meaningful, due to
the fact that the individual thought enough of me to take time to send a
note. It was rewarding to have so many
meaningful words spoken to me at my school, Edgewood Elementary. Whether it was administrators, teachers, staff,
students, or parents issuing a congratulatory message, one sole idea remained
the same. It was truly a recognition of
the school and the work everyone inside of it does each and every day. My most prideful moment as a teacher extends
no further than the banquet itself.
After thinking about all of the accolades received that evening, one
stood above the rest. The fact that I
was able to listen to a speech about my impact spoken by my former student Madison
Buddenbohn was the ultimate reward.
Madison was in sixth grade at the time, but delivered a message with the
poise of a Valedictorian. In one minute
she gave me all the praise I would ever need and reassured me 100% that my job
is worth every minute of it.
I would be
remiss if I neglected to mention the wonderful business community of Harford
County. The gifts and monetary donations
offered by so many offer a simple resounding “yes” to the question of “does
education matter?” I spent the better
part of two weeks taking time to hand write notes of thanks to all that
expressed their gratitude for education.
Never in my life have I felt so important as a professional.
before I close, there are a few individuals that I must publicly thank. In life I have discovered that success is
certainly derived from hard work, however, you need a lot of help along the way
in order to get there. The folks that
have influenced my life are too numerous to list, however there are a few that
should not go without mentioning. First
and foremost is my wife, Adrienne Jehnert.
I have the fortune to ride to my job and work alongside the person I
love the most each and every day.
Adrienne has made me a better man personally outside of work, but inside
of school her impact on me has been immeasurable. She has influenced me with an emphasis on organization,
responsibility, and duty as a teacher.
She has taught at Edgewood Elementary School for sixteen years and has
been an invaluable asset. She does not
always get recognized for her excellence but her impact on early childhood
education at our school is invaluable.
She inspires me to be the best person I can be on a daily basis and
there is no doubt that I would not be the type of teacher I am without her
My son Colby
Bransky and daughter Carley Jehnert are without a doubt the apples of my
eye. When I was younger I really did not
have any aspirations other than to be a good dad. My children have made me immensely
proud. I have seen more A’s on my son
Colby’s report cards than I saw on mine during my whole education. He works so hard and shows the desire that I
always wished I had. He is a strong
athlete and balances school and sports successfully. He is growing into such a fine young man. My daughter Carley has the sweetest heart and
in a nutshell, loves to love. She gives
so much to everyone she comes into contact with. For only being in second grade she has
touched so many lives through her charity and generosity. She has her daddy’s heart, her mommy’s
beauty, and the ambition and confidence that I could have only dreamed of. I am astonished at all of her
parents, Bernadette and Larry Jehnert.
My father is as patient as they come as an individual. He has never been overbearing with his words
because he never had to be. His positive
actions were all he needed to set forth to get his message across. Actions speak louder than words could never
be more true. He is a humble man that
did his daily job for almost fifty years without any accolades. He did not look for any and he did not need
any for reassurance. He achieves his
true happiness when he makes others happy.
He is the greatest guy I have ever known and will ever know for that
matter. Superheroes do not always wear
capes. Last, if I could dedicate the
award of Harford County Teacher of the Year to anyone it would be to my
mother. She lasted the test of time with
me. I broke her heart over and over when
I was younger. She would work like a dog
during the day, putting in close to sixty hours a week. She would come home to nothing but
trouble. I was ignorant and
irresponsible. She tried so hard with
me, but her message just did not sink in.
But guess what? She NEVER gave up
on me……EVER! She was persistent. When they said a mother’s love is
unconditional and everlasting they were not kidding.
So, this is
it. I was never sure how many people
ever read my blog, but I did hear from a few.
I love to write and I love to share my message to help others learn, so
I enjoyed writing these blogs every couple of weeks. It has been my honor and my pleasure to serve
as Harford County Public Schools Teacher of the Year. I now belong to an esteemed fraternity of
educators and for that I am really proud.
Twenty years ago, no one and I mean NOONE who knew me could have
possibly predicted this measure of success.
Let’s just say…..I was a project.
This award is a testament to everyone out there who put forth effort
towards me and never gave up on me. For all of those that said that I didn’t
listen, I did. It took me awhile to get
“it” but I did listen.
Thank you to
UPDATE: NOVEMBER 30, 2021
BOARD OF EDUCATION OF HARFORD COUNTY
NOTICE OF PUBLIC COMMENT PARTICIPATION
MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2021
OPEN SESSION: 5:15 PM - 5:20 PM
This meeting will be conducted virtually with no public attendance due to the brief nature of this meeting
and the logistical issues regarding allowing public attendance in advance of the 6:30 PM meeting.
*The only item the Board will consider during this open meeting is consideration of meeting in a closed session.
CLOSED SESSION: 5:20 PM - 6:15 PM
BUSINESS MEETING: 6:30 PM – ADJOURNMENT
This meeting will be conducted in a hybrid fashion and public attendance will be permitted as explained below:
DOORS WILL OPEN AT 6:20 PM AND THE MEETING WILL BEGIN AT 6:30 PM
The Board of Education of Harford County will hold a hybrid Business Meeting on Monday, December 6, 2021, at 6:30 PM in the Board Room of the A.A. Roberty Building with Board Members, staff, and presenters in attendance both virtually and in-person. A 60-seat capacity will be available to the public. Seats will be available on a first come-first served basis. The meeting will be streamed live and archived for later viewing on the HCPS Website.
Public Comment Participation Call-In Process
Community members who wish to provide comments virtually during the Public Comments segment of the Business meeting are required to register by completing this form Public Comment Registration Form.
Registrations must be received by 9:00 AM on Monday, December 6, 2021. All fields on the registration form must be completed.
Speakers are reminded that public comments are considered public information and, as such, are subject to the Maryland Public Information Act.
UPDATE: NOVEMBER 19, 2021
The following information will be sent directly to all families with an email in our mass communications system on Friday, November 19, 2021 at 1:30 p.m.
Please take a moment to review the following message from HCPS about inclement weather operations during the 2021-2022 school year:
Inclement Weather Operations 2021-2022
Below is the message from the linked video, should you prefer to read the update here:
"As the weather gets colder, we reminisce about 'traditional' snow days from before COVID, and of course, think about virtual instruction that took place last year- even on snow days! As we wait for those first flakes to fall this year, we want to give our students and staff a quick update on how inclement weather will be addressed this year.
First, thank you to all of you who completed the survey about what staff and families would like to see on inclement weather days this year. There are many factors that must be considered moving forward. One factor that must be considered is if we hold asynchronous virtual instruction, as most survey respondents requested, will it count towards the state required 180 instructional days? Until we can confidently confirm that is the case, HCPS will utilize systemwide closures on inclement weather days. These will ensure the safety of students traveling on buses and provide consistent messaging for staff. Systemwide closures mean schools and offices are closed no instruction, in person or virtual, will take place. Essential personnel will receive further instruction from their immediate supervisors when needed. Transportation services will be suspended. We will continue to try to make and deliver these decisions the night before; not only does this help families and staff prepare for the closure, it ensures our transportation department who transports students to many out of county placements that require bus routes beginning much earlier and lasting much further into the evening than a traditional bus route, has plenty of notice, too.
If conditions allow for a delayed opening or require an early dismissal, HCPS will conduct those operational changes in the same manner they will apply to all students and staff and essential personnel will receive further instruction from their immediate supervisor.
Again, if the announcement says it is a systemwide closure, all schools and offices are shut down and essential personnel will receive additional information from their supervisor.
If we can operate virtually on inclement weather days in the future, we will be sure to share that with you as early as possible."
UPDATE: NOVEMBER 16, 2021
The following information will be sent directly to all families via phone, email, and text via our mass communications system Tuesday, November 16, 2021 at 5:00 p.m.
We would like to announce a new feature available on hcps.org for those utilizing HCPS bus transportation. If your bus or bus route is experiencing a known delay, information will be posted as soon as possible via the School Bus Route Status button on the homepage. The information is designed to provide the duration of the delay and whether a bus replacement will be necessary.
Thank you for your patience as we continue to face challenges like staffing shortages in our transportation department. If you or someone you know is interested in training to become an HCPS bus driver, please apply at hcps.org.
UPDATE: NOVEMBER 16, 2021
The following information will be sent directly to all staff and families via phone, email, and text via our mass communications system Wednesday, November 17, 2021 at 5:00 p.m.
On Wednesday, November 24, 2021, all HCPS schools and offices will be dismissed 3 hours early. Schools and offices will remain closed on Thursday, November 25 and Friday, November 26, 2021 for Thanksgiving break. Please note, half-day PreK will NOT meet on early dismissal dates.
Please visit www.hcps.org to access calendar information for the entire 2021-2022 school year, or by clicking here.
11/30/2021 12:12:48 PM
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