Cobb County Schools named their 2011-2012 Teachers of the Year for elementary, middle and high school -- and Kennesaw has a winner in Coy Dunn, theatre instructor at
Since 2004, Dunn has developed the Kennesaw Mountain High School drama program into a widely-recognized model for success. Cobb Superintendent Dr. Michael Hinojosa made surprise announcements for all three teachers during special called assemblies at each school. Other winners are music teacher Richard McKee of Acworth Intermediate School and Dawn Castleberry, who teaches family and consumer science at Lovinggood Middle School.
Over the past seven years, Dunn's KMHS students have earned five team state titles with one-act play and literary events, numerous individual state titles in speaking and acting events, 13 out of 14 region titles, and a state championship in Poetry Out Loud.
Dunn, a graduate of
Berry College in Rome, said he received confirmation of his "mission" to teach at Camp Winshape in Rome while serving as a counselor. Truett Cathy, founder of
Chick-fil-A restaurants and Camp Winshape, spoke to campers about life’s most important decisions – The Three M’s: your master, your mate, and your mission. "It was then I realized that teaching was MY
mission in life," said Dunn.
Additionally, Dunn's theatre department produces an elementary show each spring for grades K–5 for feeder schools and the community. "These productions have been a huge success for all involved because they provide excellent opportunities for my students to understand the importance of being positive role models for the younger students," said Dunn.
What's his biggest accomplishment in his teaching career? "Having my students realize that hard work and perseverance really does pay off, and seeing that sense of pride on their faces makes me feel I have truly accomplished something worthwhile," said Dunn.