Even though this is the second time that April King has been named Teacher of the Year, she was still floored by the award.
This year’s Kingston Elementary School Teacher of the Year was also named Teacher of the Year more than 15 years ago when she was teaching at Pee Dee Elementary.
But when Kingston Elementary Principal Dr. Dawn Brooks had her stay on the stage with her class after a recent awards assembly, King still had no idea why.
Brooks then made the announcement that King was chosen as Kingston’s Teacher of the Year.
“I ugly-cried, and it was not pretty,” King said with a laugh. “I turned all the way around and I couldn’t even walk over to her.”
King has spent the past 15 years teaching at KES.
“It really means a lot to be chosen by your own friends, the people you dig in the trenches with every day,” King said.
King is “an Horry County girl through and through”, having graduated from Aynor High School and receiving her undergraduate degree in elementary education from Coastal Carolina University.
Her first job out of school was at Pee Dee Elementary where she worked for seven years, and the rest of the time she has been at home at KES.
As for what she loves about her job, she said she has a saying, “I do this for the change, not for the change,” meaning teachers may not make large salaries, but she does it for the change she gets to see in her students.
“Seeing those moments, getting love and knowing you’re wanted and needed, and giving them back as much as they give me, and teaching them how to be productive,” King said.
She lives in the Daisy community and has been married for 20 years to her husband Greg, and has two children, Noah (16) and Kylee (13).
As for her free time, she still spends it with kids.
“You would think that after spending all day with kids that I wouldn’t elect to spend all my free time with them, but I do,” King said.
She regularly helps with the youth at her church, Loris First Baptist.
“I still spend a lot of time with kids, just bigger kids!” she laughed. “I don’t know what it is like to be by myself.”
When she does get the chance, though, she enjoys reading and just spending time with her family.
“I would be absolutely honored to represent the district, but to know that my people in the building chose me, that means more to me. They know me. Just to know that I am Kingston’s is enough,” King said.
Dr. Brooks said King is an amazing teacher.
“She always goes above and beyond to do what is best for her students. Students and staff absolutely love Mrs. King. She is very dedicated to her profession and always has her students’ best interest at heart. She is, without a doubt, an asset to Kingston Elementary,” Dr. Brooks said.