National Teaching Award Nominee
Chaffee Elementary School, Chaffee, Missouri
Student Nomination Story
Chelsea Nesbit has taught two of my children. Last year she was a 5th grade teacher to my daughter Kaelyn. Kaelyn instantly fell in love with her classroom, teaching ways, and all over loved her as a teacher. This year Miss Nesbit moved down to teach 2nd grade. My daughter Macie had gotten her as a teacher for the school year. I was nervous but excited because my older daughter Kaelyn loved her so much. 1st grade for Macie was very discouraging. Macie has struggled with her hearing and speech since she was 2 years old. Entering school was a challenge as her outside therapist could not pinpoint exactly why she was struggling so much. We received private therapy from the time Macie was 3 until present day. In 1st grade we also discovered Macie was having issues with her vision. Quickly with a few visits to the optometrist we discovered she had exophoria in one eye. Basically one eye looked ahead of the other so she would see/interpret different words. The effects of it mimicked dyslexia in her reading skills. We began occupational therapy for her vision on top of what we already began with from her toddler years. My 6 year old was telling me that she was asking peers for help and couldn't see and can't hear. The teacher resorted to the only solution was to hold Macie back as she wasn't smart. Not only did she want me to hold Macie back but also my kindergartener because they would then be in the same grade. I declined. And by law I could refuse because Macie has an IEP. We ended 1st grade defeated. Macie and I both were exhausted, drained, pushed to not enjoying school. Starting 2nd grade was emotional for us both. Macie was not enthusiastic to attend at all. I met her teacher at back to school night and we had a brief conversation about our 1st grade struggles. I explained how we had been though 4 previous tube surgeries at that point and she was being tested for CAPD (central auditory processing disorder). She was accepting and hit me with her own personal struggle with tubes, hearing issues and struggles in school. I left back to school night in tears from finally feeling like my daughter had a chance. She had a chance to fall in love with school. Macie began school mid August 2018. By labor day weekend Macie's attitude towards school, education, getting active in her education has flipped completely. She was allowing me to do her hair, she cared about going to school, she was excited to go to school. I had not seen this excitement in her in so long. It was very welcomed. 16 days. 16 days is all it took for her teacher to change her feelings and attitude towards school. One teacher took 180 days to ruin my child's love of education and another teacher took 16 days to undo the previous teachers work. Now tell me that isn't something amazing. Not only is she a deserving teacher for her passion she puts into the kids she is the most caring and thoughtful teacher to all students. Macie loves her teacher so much she painted a llama for her. Miss Nesbit's classroom is in llamas. Macie is constantly thinking about her teacher when we are out. She wants to always buy extra school supplies to help her classroom, she wants to bring in peanut-free snacks due to a boy being allergic, she is always wanting to buy a gift for her teacher because she makes Macie feel loved. Macie truly feels loved at school. We battle IEP regulations for CAPD constantly. However, this teacher goes above and beyond to help Macie succeed. She goes the extra mile to make extra copies, send home extra work, send home extra books, gives Macie little incentives in reading daily for a month to earn eating lunch with her personally in the classroom. She cares. Macie had her 5th surgery today. Her teacher sent her home with detailed homework, a stuffed llama to take to surgery, personal note how she wishes her well and will be praying for her. She kept in constant contact with me throughout the day. She even sent me a video of the class wishing her well and that they miss her. Macie loved it. She feels loved. You constantly hear all these bad teacher stories. And it sucks. Especially when you have a teacher like Miss Nesbitm she is phenomenal. I honestly have no idea where Macie would have been this year had she not had her. She took her time with Macie and has broken the hard shell Macie built up from being so torn down last year. She is kind and loving to her students. Macie would not be the student she is today with out Miss Nesbit. As a mom I can't thank her enough. She has given back a huge chunk to my daughter that I never would have been able to restore. That means more to me than anything.
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