Executing a surprise takes coordination sometimes from several parties to achieve the best effect of the surprise itself. That’s what it takes to pull off surprising the Teacher of the Month that we honor each month. 

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Thursday afternoon, I made my way to Rocori High in Cold Spring to recognize Ms. Kristina George as the January Teacher of the Month.  

Photo Credit: Dave Thomas Townsquare Media
Photo Credit: Dave Thomas Townsquare Media
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We were supposed to make the presentation last week, but Ms. George was out sick on the day that we planned our surprise. I worked with Mr. Ryan Hauge, the principal of the school. We had to get our schedules to match up to be able to make this happen.  

Photo Credit: Dave Thomas Townsquare Media
Photo Credit: Dave Thomas Townsquare Media
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When I arrived at the school, Mr. Hauge and his staff were ready and had a plan. We made our way through the halls of the high school to Ms. Georges class. Mr. Hauge entered the class and found a student making a presentation, so I stayed in the hall to not disturb that presentation.  

Once we were given the “all clear”, I made my way into the class along with Mr. Hauge’s staff to "spring" the surprise. Mr. Hauge asked the class how they felt about Ms. George, and each student expressed their fondness for their teacher. That’s when Mr. Hauge announced that she was our teacher of the month.  

Kristina George was overcome with surprise and was visibly moved by the acknowledgment. Her first question was “who did this”. I announced that the student was Bethany, and she eagerly raised her hand. 

Photo Credit: Dave Thomas Townsquare Media
Photo Credit: Dave Thomas Townsquare Media
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Bethany wrote that Ms. George takes time to listen to her students when they have questions and treats them with kindness and respect. Bethany also says that her teacher goes above and beyond for those in her class, helping them during normal class time and out. The students in Ms. Georges class are held to a high standard but it's done in a fun and engaging manner that keeps the students interested in learning and thriving. Then there was the deeper connection that Ms. George builds with her students from the special drawer that contains hair ties, band aides, tide sticks, and vitamin c drops among other items.  

Bethany is quoted as saying that Ms. Kristina George is a “Rockstar”.   

I presented the personalized plaque and water bottle from All Star Trophy and Awards in St. Cloud to Ms. George. Then I gave her the certificates from Coyote Moon Grille, St. Cloud Floral, Great Harvest Bread Company and Little Caesars of St. Cloud.  

 

It was a lot to take in for Ms. George who was just going about her normal afternoon when the schedule was changed. She went from watching presentations to posing with her students for pictures to commemorate the occasion.  

Photo Credit: Dave Thomas Townsquare Media
Photo Credit: Dave Thomas Townsquare Media
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From being in the classroom, it was so easy to tell the impact Ms. George is having on her students, and watching their excitement for her will probably mean as much to her as anything.  

Being able to see the reaction of this teacher and her students served as a good reminder of why we have this contest. Teachers are going above and beyond the help their students navigate what can be the choppy waters of their youth or teen years and rarely do those teachers get a sign of appreciation while that student is still in their class.  

Because Bethany took the time to want to bring this exposure to Ms. George, she was able to give a special teacher a special honor and memory. 

You can submit a teacher for this recognition by going to river967.com or mix949.com or the mobile app for either station. The apps can be found free in your app store.  

Many Thanks to Mr. Hauge and his staff for their help in putting this surprise together. Also, Thank You to our sponsors, All Star Trophy and Awards in St. Cloud, Coyote Moon Grill, Great Harvest Bread Company, St. Cloud Floral and Little Caesars of St. Cloud.

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