NMS teacher surprised with yearbook dedication
At first, Newark Middle School seventh grade science teacher Craig Sutherland, of Perinton, didn’t understand why he was being greeted with a parade of cars, drivers honking their horns.
He got an idea, however, once his colleague Michelle Malchoff appeared with star-shaped balloons billowing out of her window. NMS staff gathered in front of his house and he realised he wasn’t asked to write the yearbook dedication as usual. This year’s honor went to him.
Sutherland was handed a bouquet of balloons and a reproduction of the dedication page. Instructional coach Lisa Eakins then read a portion of the dedication she wrote for him.
“I was totally shocked; it was very exciting,’’ Sutherland said. “I’m surprised I didn’t choke up. This was the highpoint of my career, so far. I’ve had a lot of really fun, exciting things happen during my 28 years of service and to be recognized like this was really nice. There’s something about this honor that it’s really about the relationships I’ve formed with teaching friends and students. Thousands of students have come through my room over the years. That’s what makes this mean so much and be so special.
“Every year, when amazing educators have had their name called when they learned the yearbook was dedicated to them, I’ve wondered what it felt like to go up onstage. It’s very humbling. If I could have received this honor in the auditorium, with all the kids in front of me, I would have let them know how important they have been to my journey. I can’t wait to be able to see them all again in person.”
Sutherland and his colleagues finished the day with slices of peanut butter pie in the backyard.