Teachers of the Year announced

Published 2:55 pm Saturday, December 24, 2022

It’s that time of year again. All of the school districts announce their Teacher of the Year nominees, one from each school. Then, in early 2023, each district will hold an event to select their overall winner, who will move on to compete against others across the state. 

This week, we’re spotlighting all of the Teacher of the Year nominees from Cumberland County. 

Each year, Cumberland County Public Schools recognizes a teacher for the elementary, middle and high school for their hard work and dedication to their students. These teachers, just like many of their co-workers, put in time and effort to make sure their students thrive in and out of the classroom. 

Cumberland County Elementary School

Stephen Richard Hughes has been with Cumberland since 1998. During his 25 years he has taught kindergarten and first and third grade. He is currently teaching first grade with a class he looped up with from last year. 

A big part of teaching for Hughes is focusing on relationships with his students. While in his class, he praises and supports students in their work. Then, even after they’ve moved to the next grades, Hughes attends sports games, competitions, beauty competitions and dance events and more that his former students participate in to keep cheering them on in their endeavors. 

He is creative in keeping his class engaged and learning with songs, chants and manipulatives. Hughes also secured a grant from the Cumberland Foundation for STEM materials to help students explore different building materials and problem-solving games.

Hughes also strives to keep learning as he is currently enrolled in the Master’s program at Longwood University for reading, literacy, and learning to pursue a degree as a reading specialist.

He also earned the title of Teacher of the Year for the district. 

Cumberland Middle School

Tiffany Nicole Hurt has been teaching at Cumberland since 2005 at the elementary school and middle school. She currently teaches english. 

Hurt’s philosophy is to educate the whole child. She sets high standards and helps her students through life’s challenges. She works to make her classroom a safe and fun space for learning. She works to raise awareness of topics that may impact their lives including breast cancer awareness, heart awareness and Black History Month. 

While she’s not teaching her students, Hurt holds numerous leadership positions as Fifth Grade Team Chair and an active member and collaborator with the school’s leadership team. She also co-coordinating events such as the Holidays Around the World, End of Year, and Fall Festival drive-through events.

“I feel so blessed to have again been chosen by my colleagues for this award,” said Hurt. “I thoroughly enjoy working with my students to help them achieve their academic and personal goals.”

Cumberland High School

Brittany Morgan Doss has taught science at Cumberland for 15 years teaching earth science, oceanography and geology. She is an alumnus of Cumberland High School and graduated in 2003 and graduated from Longwood in 2008. Her goal was to return home to Cumberland. 

She currently serves as the Science Department Chairperson, member of the School Leadership Team and a sponsor of both the Science Club and the Freshman Class.

“I love teaching science, especially Earth science,” said Doss. “It’s my passion in life. When I teach my students something about the Earth, such as rocks, storm systems or even volcanoes, I look at each of their faces and when I see them light up from interest I know I succeed with my lesson for the day.”

Doss also has taken the initiative to further her learning and recently graduated with a Master of Science in Geoscience with a concentration in Environmental Science from Mississippi State University. 

She stays busy with her two children, two dogs, three cats and the classroom fish, Duke. She is also an active member of the Randolph District Volunteer Fire Department Auxiliary and recently received the title of Ms. Cumberland from the Miss American Star Achievement Organization.

“Being a teacher is so rewarding in so many many ways and I am thankful for being voted and selected as the Cumberland High School Teacher of the Year,” said Doss. “I work with an amazing team of teachers and I am honored to have been selected because I know each of them deserves this as well.”