Duane Sanders
Posted on 04/08/2021
Duane Sanders

Today’s #HCSHeroes Spotlight is Duane Sanders, a 1st grade teacher at Wallace A. Smith Elementary School. Mr. Sanders has been part of Hamilton County Schools since 2009 when he began as a substitute teacher for the district. In 2014, he became an educational assistant and later became a certified teacher in 2017. Mr. Sanders was nominated for his commitment to ensuring the success of each student.

Several 1st graders went into first grade a little behind due to not being able to finish kindergarten at school. Mr. Sanders has gone above and beyond for the kids at our school,” said Tiffany Holt, a parent. “When we were doing virtual school, instead of holding off on reading groups he would set up times that were convenient for parents sometimes at 7pm to do a Zoom lesson with them! He has started a reading after school program with his class that my son is involved in which he loves! Mr. Sanders has helped so many kids in his class get back up to level with their reading. He is also over the safety patrol at the school. Out of school he will try and go to any sports games that the kids might have to show support.”

Ms. Holt adds, “His love for these children is evident in everything he does!” 

With all of the changes COVID-19 has brought this school year, Mr. Sanders has still found creative ways for his students to work together.

I have supported changes during COVID-19 by finding ways for students to work together in groups and still do the fun things like reader's theater, games, and planting and growing plants,” said Mr. Sanders. “We have had to be creative to try to catch kids up on lost learning.

Mr. Sanders adds, “My favorite part about teaching is working with kids and forming long time relationships after they move on to other grades. I love watching them grow in learning.”

The efforts of our teachers and staff are truly heroic, and we are proud to have people like Mr. Sanders on our team to support our students!

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