UNION COUNTY, N.C. - Union County Public Schools has chosen a high school history teacher as its 2014-15 teacher of the year.
Jennifer Whitley, a civics and world history teacher at Forest Hills High School, was named during Thursday's UCPS Teacher of the Year Banquet .
Whitley told the room filled with UCPS educators that she is a product of Union County Public Schools, having graduated from Forest Hills High School, where her mother taught school and where she has taught since 2002.
She has also taught at Piedmont High from 1999 to 2001 and at Anson Senior High School from 1998 to 1999.
“There are so many of you in here that impacted my life,” she said, mentioning her mentor, Jimmie Quesinberry, who began his teacher career at Forest Hills High School.
“I grew up at Forest Hills. I graduated from there and I couldn’t wait to come back,” Whitley said. “My mom was a teacher at Forest Hills High School and Piedmont before that. I was blessed to have a mom who showed me that as an educator it takes a village -- it takes a community, it takes the homes, the teachers, the administrators, the businesses and the people around them. Sometimes we don’t have all those components, and it’s up to us to step up and fill those shoes.”