FHS’ Ward honored by Chamber

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 16, 2014

In the eyes of the Florala High School staff and student body, Jennie Ward is already a “teacher of the year.”

Now, with the official distinction awarded to her by the Andalusia Chamber of Commerce, the whole community knows just how much the FHS science teacher dedicates herself to providing a complete education experience to her students.



Ward is the chamber’s secondary teacher of the year and will be honored at the chamber’s annual banquet on Thu., Jan. 23.

A Samson resident, Ward teaches science to students in the seventh through 12th grades at FHS – a post she’s held for the last two years. She earned not only a bachelor’s degree in psychology, but also a master’s in secondary education.

In addition to teaching science, Ward serves as the director of the school’s aquaculture program and the sponsor for its science club.

“Working alongside students, I’m able to help them to learn to solve problems and implement new ideas,” Ward said. “What I love about this learning laboratory is that students’ achievements are put in the spotlight – which makes for a great personal learning environment to spark enthusiasm for science.”

It’s nothing to see Ward at the FHS campus on the weekends, feeding the fish in the fishery, helping students build catapults or working on projects to better her school’s science program, staff said.

“It takes a lot of creativity to come up with labs that challenge students with the limited resources we have available,” she said. “And it’s wonderful to watch.”

FHS Principal Brent Zessin described Ward as “one of the most loyal, industrious and motivated people with whom I have had the opportunity to work” and said under her tutelage, the school’s aquaculture program has gained state and national attention.

“(Ward) possesses many desirable qualities needed as a teacher – dependability, competency, excellent people skills,” Zessin said. “She’s a true asset to our school.”

Fellow teacher Susan Bondurant said it’s rewarding to watch students in Ward’s classes.

“From the first day, she was willing to share her love of science with her students,” Bondurant said. “In our eyes, at FHS, Jennie Ward is already the teacher of the year.”