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Liberty teacher wins May WGEM Golden Apple Award

LIBERTY, IL (WGEM) — Liberty Elementary School fourth teacher Elizabeth Bailey was awarded the final WGEM Golden Apple Award of the school year.

Bailey is in her ninth year teaching and says it’s a profession that came naturally to her.

“I knew I wanted to be a teacher when I was very young,” Bailey said. “I have a lot of educators in my family, a lot. I just never doubted that, so that’s why I’m here.”

Principal Jody Obert says Bailey is a positive inspiration for the entire school.

“When she comes into the school it is just game on. She brings a smile and she brings a special light,”  Obert said.

“She’s very enthusiastic. She always tells us to persevere and always work our hardest,” fourth grader Cora Lee Courtney explained.

“She’s always encouraging and making us laugh,” said fourth grade student Raeleigh Ander.

Now in her ninth year teaching, Bailey says some of her positive energy comes straight from the kids.

“I just love the excitement, the success they show. They are always so engaged and ready to learn. It’s just so fun,” Bailey explained.

Fellow Liberty teacher Rochelle Luaders nominated Bailey for the WGEM Golden Apple and her son Beau is in her class.

“She makes kids feel important and loved and that’s what you hope for as a parent,” Luaders said.

Luaders says Bailey has a natural instinct for what each child needs.

“When he struggled with anxiety she made sure she took care of him and gave him special jobs and things like that when we was having a hard time,” Luaders said.

“Before I got into fourth grade I was shy, kind of shy, but now I feel like I’m a lot more outgoing,” Beau Luaders said.

Obert says Bailey’s genuine love for her students translates into success in the classroom.

“I don’t think she realizes how special she is, but she is just the best of the best. She brings that to our school each and every day,” Obert said.

The entire school surprised Bailey in the gym with an assembly after she received the Golden Apple award. The band played and there was a “Top Ten Reasons We Love Mrs. Bailey”.

10. She is caring, loving, and fun!
9. She does not take no for an answer!
8. She is always willing to learn and try new things!
7. She has more teacher t-shirts than anybody else in the building!
6. She has high expectations for her students!
5. Her positive energy and helpful spirit is contagious!
4. Her smile lights up the room!
3. She is and outstanding relationships builder!
2. She loves the students and staff and Liberty School!
1. She is awesome and so loved!

Natalie Will

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