Teacher of the Year

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Kenna McKinley

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Teacher of the Year

Playing school as a little girl with a chalkboard and a teacher edition textbook is how Pace High School`s Teacher of the Year, Lisa Taylor, found her love for the world of teaching. “From the time I was a little girl, I always played school,” Mrs. Taylor said. As she got into high school, she then had a group of teachers who helped her fall into the direction of teaching. “I had a group of teachers rally around me and encourage me to continue my decision to be a teacher. They were my biggest fans!” Mrs. Taylor said.  

Mrs. Taylor`s first teaching position was at the George Stone Technical Center in Pensacola. “It was kind of funny actually. Here I am a brand-new teacher and I`m teaching people twenty, maybe even thirty, years older than me,” Mrs. Taylor said. Her time at George Stone was well spent, and she even won Teacher of the Year there. The George Stone Teacher of the Year also did some adjunct teaching at Pensacola State College. After her time there, she found her teaching guiding her through the doors of Pace High School.  

In room 611, Mrs. Taylor has taught English and Leadership. She teaches all grades through her leadership class, but her English class is just for seniors. “My favorite thing about Mrs. Taylor`s English class is just her positivity all the time. It`s contagious,” Amya Huey said. Her leadership class is an elective where students go to S.S. Dixon Primary to help teachers, mentor ESE students, and lead the Anchor and First Priority Clubs. Through all these activities, Mrs. Taylor teaches about life, motivation, and leadership skills. “Mrs. Taylor has taught me what it means to be a true leader and to be proud of who I am because everybody is one of a kind. I am forever grateful for the influence she`s had on me and my life,” said Gavin Oliver. “She has taught me to look at things with a new perspective when life get tough. I`m so lucky to have had her all four years of high school,” said Kenna McKinley.  

Twenty-five years of teaching holds many memories for Mrs. Taylor. “Within each school year there have been several examples,” said Mrs. Taylor. But, seeing everyone`s progress down the road is what really hits home for her. “Seeing one of my students return after completing boot camp and seeing them in their uniform or seeing a student blossom through the school year and leave me with so much confidence to conquer the world are some of my favorite memories,” said Taylor.   

Mrs. Taylor has impacted many students lives with her teaching and it has impacted her life as well. “I have had the opportunity to spend my days in a profession that brings me joy, provides challenging opportunities, and allows me to be part of so many people`s lives. I can sit back and see the investment that has been made, whether it’s on graduation day or years later when a previous student comes up to tell me about their life,” said Taylor.  

We are so lucky to have Mrs. Lisa Taylor as our Teacher of the Year!