A teacher in the Alexander Central School District is being nationally recognized for her work.
Colleen McNamara, or "Ms. McNamara" as her students call her, was named the 2016 Educator of the Year by the group Educators of America. McNamara was nominated by her sister, and her students and their parents submitted letters and stories to explain why she was so deserving.
"It was really overwhelming - in a positive way!" said McNamara.
She says the most important thing when she's teaching is keeping her students engaged, and she puts in a lot of time and energy to make sure each lesson is entertaining.
"This is really my passion, and something I feel like I'm meant to be doing," she said
While every lesson is important, McNamara says she's not just focused on academics. She works hard to make her students well-rounded kids who can easily carry a conversation and speak in a professional way.
"This is their future. They need to be prepared to go out into the workforce. They need to be prepared to go into an interview with confidence while still being humble and finding a way to connect with that person so they can land the job," she said.
You can hear more about Ms. McNamara and her teaching style tonight on 7 Eyewitness News at 5.