Williams sets high expectations for her students and their success
This article is part of a series by The Vicksburg Post, in partnership with the Vicksburg-Warren County Chamber of Commerce, featuring each of the Educator of the Year nominees.
For nearly 13 years, Diedra Williams, Lead Teacher at South Park Elementary, has set high expectations for her students but also lets each of them know “that Mrs. Williams loves them.”
“When I was in the classroom, I always pushed my students to be the best in everything they did,” Williams said. “That included academics, sports, cheer, dance, band, etc. I drilled and repeated as much as possible to make sure we had fun together. We cried, laughed and learned together every single day.”
Williams began her career with the Vicksburg Warren School District in December 2007 as an elementary teacher at Vicksburg Intermediate School. In August 2015, she moved to the Hollandale School District as a data coach at T.R. Sanders Elementary. In August 2017, she returned to Vicksburg as Lead Teacher at South Park Elementary.
Williams is a finalist for the Vicksburg-Warren County Chamber of Commerce’s Educator of the Year award.
The Chamber will select and announce one elementary and one secondary teacher of the year on Feb. 17. The winner of each award will receive $1,000 from Ameristar Casino and the runner-up for each award will receive $500 from Mutual Credit Union.
Williams earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Alcorn State in 2008 and then a master’s in K-6 language and literacy from Kaplan University in 2010. In 2016, she received a specialist degree in teacher leadership from Walden University. She also received a specialist degree from William Carey University for educational leadership in 2020.
“When I visit classrooms, I always interact with the students to see what they’re learning. I ask questions to see if they understand and assist with the teacher if needed,” Williams says of her role as Lead Teacher. “I oversee data to also see the students’ strengths and weaknesses and have those talks with them to encourage self-motivation and areas needed for growth.
“Even though I am not the main teacher in the classroom, the students still know that I personally know a little something about them.”
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