This week is Teacher Appreciation Week, a week set aside to honor those teachers who have made an impact on our lives and those of today's students. But for one Cape Girardeau educator, the week will have a special significance.
Scott McMullen, a fifth-grade math and science teacher at Cape Girardeau Central Middle School, grew up as an "at-risk" student. But while he faced plenty of hardships at home, he was given the gift of a good teacher at school. In addition to teaching him math and science, an influential teacher of McMullen's inspired him to believe in himself.
McMullen now says that the only thing that prevented him from being in the criminal justice system was that he received an education. He said that many of the friends he grew up with are now in prison because they did not pursue their education.
After high school McMullen went on to receive a bachelor's degree in elementary education from Southeast Missouri State University and a master's degree in education administration from William Woods University. And while going through college he would work 50 to 60 hours a week, in addition to helping his mother raise his younger sister.
McMullen will soon take his can-do attitude on to a new role in June, principal at Cape Girardeau Central Junior High School -- a position he is well suited for.
If you ever doubted the impact teachers have, just look at Scott McMullen. While the content teachers teach is important, just as important is the mentoring role many play to students who are desperately seeking affirmation and encouragement to succeed.
Congratulations to Scott McMullen on his new role, and thank you to all our educators. We truly do appreciate you.