Giles County Early Childhood Educators rewarded
Early childhood education jobs don't come with high pay, but the work is rewarding. The Giles Early Education Program is acknowledging ten teachers who know that well.
Six years ago, several ladies in Giles County formed the Giles Early Education Program (GEEP) to help feed teachers' passion and reduce the turnover rates at child care facilities in the county.
"People who teach in these centers do tremendous work, but they could make more money working at a fast food place, so we wanted to recognize them and encourage them and honor their profession," said Ann Getty, member of GEEP.
Two years ago they created the Giles Incentives for Teachers, or "GIFT", as they call it. It's an anonymous grant managed by the Alliance for Better Childcare Strategies given to early education teachers who have gone above and beyond to get more certifications for their jobs.
"It's really worked- we've kept the same teachers, they have increased their education, they are proud of themselves as they should be, and we're proud of them", said Getty.
Madison Bragg works at Kids and Company and is one of ten teachers being recognized. She says this check couldn't come at a more perfect time.
"I'm getting ready to go through a big surgery within the next three months, so for me, it's going to pay my rent for the next three months because I am going to be out of work for the next two months for the surgery so it makes a huge difference," said Bragg.
Bragg, who originally didn't want to go into teaching, was the first recipient of the Giles Early Education Program Scholarship six years ago when she was graduated high school.
"I got the scholarship and here we are six years later and I am actually in the field. I told them, oh no, I would never go into childhood education-just not my thing, and here we are," said Bragg.
The same or new teachers who have completed the certifications get rewarded twice a year, and the checks range in price.