PENNSBURY >> Blair Greiner, an art teacher at the William Penn Middle School, has been named this year’s “Character Builder of the Year” by Pennsbury LYFT.
Grenier was presented with the award by LYFT leaders Pastor Vicky Allen and school board member Gary Sanderson at the June 20 Pennsbury School Board meeting.
The award is given to a teacher, staff member or administrator who through consistent encouragement, role modeling and upright actions, cultivates great character among students.
Greiner was nominated for the award by her fellow teachersKim Esposito, Sally Poletick, Kristin Slota, Pat Balcer, Cheryl Szogi, Lisa Freedman, Anita Willbanks, Jane Jones, Kelly Giacomelli, Bridget Blackshire, and Marissa McGettigan; Guidance Counselor Laura Sitvarin; Principal Chris Becker; Secretaries Janice Hendrick, Sherri Killoran and Carol Huck; and Student Kevin Lubanski.
In nominating Greiner for the award, they all agreed that she is “the epitome” of an art teacher and that her “love and passion radiates to the students she teaches and the staff she works with on many different levels.”
Reading from the nomination, Sanderson said Grenier “envisions and brings to life” special projects that draw the school community together, such as designing a mural for a retiring colleague that included a square from each and every student at William Penn and creating a “Give One, Take One” project, allowing students and teachers to post encouraging messages to others when they are having a bad day.
Greiner also supported students at William Penn in opening up a school store where they gain real-world, retail experience, selling merchandise, handling money, inventorying stock and more.
This year a new SOAR Section was added to the store so that when students are recognized for positive behaviors with Soar Slips, they can redeem them for merchandise at the store. The school store also serves as a fundraiser for community art projects.
Another great example of how she cultivates character is the “Life Changer” video she initiated with students, said Sanderson.
She and a crew of students secretly interviewed others, asking what teachers had most positively impacted their lives and compiled the interviews into a video. The result was a heart-warming film shown to the entire school.
“These mindful and creative endeavors represent but a few of the ways Ms. Greiner touches her community of learners,” said Sanderson. “A tireless role model and leader for students and teachers alike, she continues building characters of integrity, honesty and compassion.”
LYFT, an acronymn that stands for Lower Makefield, Yardley, Falls and Tullytown, is a volunteer community coalition made up of individuals from all parts of the community to support and strengthen the youth and families of the Pennsbury School District.
Its mission is to create a more positive community environment where youth are safe and can thrive by working to reduce the risks that confront youth such as bullying, drug and alcohol abuse, mental health issues, school violence and delinquency. The coalition also provides support for parents and recognizes students who demonstrate positive character.