Conway Schools Names 2023 District Teacher of the Year
Conway Public Schools has named Simon Middle School Social Studies teacher Hailey Carr as the district’s Teacher of the Year for 2022-23.
CPSD Superintendent Jeff Collum surprised Carr during class Wednesday morning. When her students saw the balloons he brought, they immediately started singing “Happy Birthday” to Carr.
But since it wasn’t her birthday, Carr suspected another reason for the boss’ visit, asking incredulously “You picked ME?”
Carr has taught 6th grade at Simon Middle School for the last five years. She is also the school’s Assistant Coach for girls’ athletics. A proud University of Central Arkansas graduate, Carr says she fell in love with Conway while attending UCA. In August of 2017, she landed her dream job as a math teacher at Simon Middle School.
Carr enjoys using her creativity and passion for travel to bring lessons to life for her students. She often uses real-life experiences and pictures from her trips abroad in her social studies classroom. She also uses her musical talents and abilities to write educational songs for her students. She and her sister have recorded the songs on a YouTube channel to help students remember important concepts about Mesopotamia, Egypt, and most recently, China.
Simon Middle School Principal Christi Parrish says Carr builds important connections and relationships with her students.
“Hailey Carr exemplifies what it means to be a teacher,” says Parrish. “She is smart, creative, and compassionate. She loves her students and works hard to create an environment where all students can enjoy learning.”
“I strive to connect my students to the world beyond them and help them find their place in it,” says Carr. “As we learn about different cultures, we have important conversations about the diversity among the students here in our class and our school. I allow my students to ask questions and give input. Giving students the opportunity to share has established a classroom environment where all students feel safe and valued.”
Carr will now represent the Conway School District as a candidate for the Arkansas State Teacher of the Year. Regional finalists will be announced in late June.
Other Conway Schools’ Teachers of the Year are as follows:
Sallie Cone Preschool- D’Ann Fimple
Ida Burns Elementary- Angela Blue
Woodrow Cummins Elementary- Michelle Kingsbury
Theodore Jones Elementary- Ashley Dean
Carolyn Lewis Elementary- Ashley Silliman
Mattison Elementary- Melinda Fraser
Julia Lee Moore Elementary- Porscha Albert
Ellen Smith Elementary- Leah Pierce
Jim Stone Elementary- Haley (Ashabranner) Ward
Marguerite Vann Elementary- Morgan Williams
Bob & Betty Courtway Middle School- Deanna Robbins
Ruth Doyle Middle School- Mechell Dunlap
Ray & Phyllis Simon Middle School- Hailey Carr*
Carl Stuart Middle School- Brenda Smith
Conway Junior High- Chad Longing
Conway High School- Brick Cullum
*Conway Public Schools District Teacher of the Year