At a special breakfast Tuesday for Berkeley County School District’s top educators of the year, Sangaree Intermediate School’s Thomas Mignone received the coveted 2019 Teacher of the Year title.
Mignone, a fifth grade teacher in his third year on the job, was selected among a total of 46 teachers, each chosen this year as the best of the best at their individual schools. Also recognized were Honor Roll Teacher of the Year finalists Amy Hardison of Daniel Island School and Kimberly Walker of Nexton Elementary School.
“I’ve said it before, the announcement of the district Teacher of the Year and recognition of all school Teachers of the Year is one of the most exciting events of the year,” said Eddie Ingram, district superintendent in a statement. “We are proud of Mr. Mignone and all of our teacher-leaders who were selected by peers for outstanding commitment to students and the education profession.”
Since high school, Mignone has been confident of his career path, never second-guessing he was meant for the classroom, said a district press release. While Mignone is celebrated for focusing his teaching efforts on helping students excel in reading, writing and overall learning, he’s most recognized for instilling youth with a positive mindset and self-esteem.
Mignone credits his success in the classroom to relationship building with students.
“I don’t have it down to a science. It’s kind of natural,” he said in the release. “It’s an instinct kind of thing, but I’m really good at making kids feel good, feel confident, and not with stuff that’s sugar-coated. It’s all truthful. They appreciate that, and I appreciate the work that they give me.”
According to Mignone it’s also beneficial to build relationships with fellow educators and grow and learn together in their career field.
“I think in education, it’s a career that’s built on bouncing ideas off each other and sharing resources,” he said.
The 42nd Annual Teacher of the Year Breakfast was sponsored by Trident Technical College, Santee Cooper and the Berkeley Chamber of Commerce.