Former TRP Student Named 2018 Oak Meadows Elementary Teacher of the Year
Maria Cruz-Stone, 2nd Grade Teacher at Oak Meadows Elementary School in Manor ISD was selected as the 2018 Teacher of the Year. Mrs. Stone is only a second-year teacher, having earned her certification through the Teacher Recruitment Program (TRP) at the Round Rock Campus of Texas State University. She continued her training and completed her Master of Education degree in December 2017. Mr. Vega, the principal, praised Mrs. Stone’s teaching abilities with all levels of students. To avoid having the Teacher of the Year selection become a popularity contest, he had teachers justify their reasons for voting for a nominee. He is a seasoned educator who came out of retirement to work in the Manor schools, and he concurred with the faculty that she rightly deserved this award. Mrs. Stone describes herself as a first generation college graduate, but after earning her undergraduate degree in a field outside of education, longed to have a different purpose in life – one that helps students overcome their circumstances and achieve academically. She considers parental support crucial to the success of the students and actively recruits their help. Out of 40 teachers on campus, Maria Cruz-Stone feels honored to be considered their role model and knows that teaching is her calling.