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Crissy Stegherr, ‘Teacher of the Year,’ transitions with success to virtual instruction

MADISON – Clarissa ‘Crissy’ Stegherr, “Teacher of the Year” at Madison Elementary School, flipped drawbacks of virtual instruction to give her students a solid, learning environment.

Stegherr recognized many wonderful teachers in Madison City Schools. “I am honored and humbled that my peers felt I was deserving of this award. This year, in particular, was an incredibly challenging year for us all,” she said.

In 2013, Stegherr started working with first grade at Mountain Gap Elementary School in Huntsville. “In 2015, I decided to try to move to Madison City Schools because this was the community I grew up in and ultimately wanted to give back to,” she said.

“I was hired at Madison elementary and began teaching alongside teachers that taught me,” Stegherr said. In her first year, she worked on the same grade level as two former teachers.

She has taught first and second grade. In 2018, Stegherr helped start and co-sponsor a STEM club.

“As a teacher, I want to create a safe educational environment where students can grow physically, mentally, emotionally and socially, as well as create an atmosphere where students are invited to share ideas and take risks to reach their full potential,” Stegherr said.

Stegherr flipped the drawbacks of virtual teaching/learning to a major success this year. After volunteering as first-grade virtual teacher at Madison elementary, Stegherr’s main goal was “to create a safe learning environment, even through a screen. Lots of planning and reimagining learning went into teaching this way, but my students were wonderful and showed up ready every day to learn and participate,” she said.

A Madison native, Stegherr attended Athens State University to earn a bachelor’s degree in education. Her husband Matthew works for Dynetics. Their daughter Maggie will start kindergarten at Madison elementary this fall, and son Theo is 17 months old.

“Having a four-year-old and one-year-old keeps me pretty busy,” Crissy said. “When I’m not working, I really enjoy spending my free time with my friends and family.”

“I love baseball! My husband and I enjoy watching baseball but also learning the history of teams,” Crissy said. “Our goal is to tour all 30 major league stadiums; so far, we’ve been to five of them.”

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