Good News: Local teacher gets the surprise of a lifetime

By David Whisenant - bio l email

CLEVELAND, NC (WBTV)-She had no idea what was waiting just a few feet behind her back.

Cleveland Elementary School teacher Joy Jenkins was leading students in a song and dance during an assembly in the school auditorium Thursday morning.

When she began the curtains on the stage were closed, but as she led the students the curtains were slowly pulled back.

Jenkins didn't notice.

After a few minutes Jenkins did a spin move that was part of the dance, turning her face back to see a stage filled with her husband, her parents, the school superintendent and other school officials, and cameras from WBTV and the Salisbury Post.

Jenkins stopped and screamed, excited, but understanding that the gathering meant that she had been named the North Carolina Northwest Region's Teacher of the Year.

"I think this is totally awesome," Jenkins told WBTV.  "I'm totally overwhelmed, it's incredible and I'm honored and overjoyed and can barely speak."

Jenkins is now one of nine who are in the running to be named the state Teacher of the Year for North Carolina.