JEANERETTE, La. (KLFY) An Iberia Parish educator was awarded an unrestricted financial prize Tuesday and recognized as one of the nation’s best in her field.
News Ten’s Dalfred Jones was there for the surprise.
Just a few years ago, Jeanerette Elementary was an F school but with a collaborative effort between the school and parish administrators and in one year that F is now a B and it has been maintained it ever since.
Tuesday morning one special individual was awarded for the progress.
Teachers and students filled the room at Jeanerette Elementary in preparation for a surprise from the Milken Family Foundation, a program that provides recognition to exceptional school teachers and administrators.
“An educator exemplified with compassion, dedication, commitment and a belief that every single child can learn and have a bright future.”
Everyone knew a Jeanerette educator would receive the award, but only a select few knew exactly who it would be.
As suspense built up around the room, Lowell Milken announced the winner.
“Principal Devon Willis-Jones!”
“I had no idea that this could even happen to me. I never expected it! It’s just amazing.”
With the unrestricted 25 thousand dollar prize, Principal Jones says she and her husband are planning a cruise, and of course a few upgrades for the school,
But her students have their own idea about how she should spend the money.
“We should get a dance, and some free nachos.”
“Since the Milken award began, 35 Louisiana educators have been awarded $875,000.
In Jeanerette, Dalfred Jones for KLFY News Ten.