Wednesday, July 17, 2024

‘Smile like Susan’

AES honors late teacher at GISD board meeting

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Hearts were heavy and filled with love during the Granbury Independent School District’s regularly scheduled board meeting on Sept. 18, when Acton Elementary School Principal Maggie Walton presented a heartfelt speech about a beloved fourth grade teacher who passed away last month.

Before leading the public in the pledges to the U.S. and the Texas Flags, AES staff and family of Susan Moore gathered to honor the late teacher’s dedication and passion for education.

"Susan was a respected teacher and an integral part of our AES family,” Walton said, during the board meeting. “Anytime you walked by her classroom, you saw her doing what she did best, which was loving and leading her students well.”

According to a Facebook post from AES on Aug. 21, Moore had been with Granbury ISD since 2021 and was quoted as being a “passionate educator, a dedicated staff member, and a trusted friend.”

“To know Susan was to love her and you could not see her big smile without smiling, and in return she was known for her smile,” Walton said. “One of our staff members made stickers with the slogan ‘Smile like Susan,’ in honor of her and we brought one for each (board member) tonight.”

Although the campus was affected by such a profound loss, Walton said staff members and teachers stepped up and proved their “steadfast commitment to this profession,” — proving the quote by Richard Evans that “it is often in the darkest skies that we will see the brightest stars.”

“In the hours, days, and weeks following Susan's death, already incredible AES staff turned into true heroes,” she said. “They walked their students through the loss of their teacher with incredible care and compassion, recognizing that this might be some students' first experience with loss and with grief. They loved and cared for one another. They stepped up to love and support the Moore family in indescribable ways. We have no doubt that the Moore family will forever be a part of our AES family because of a bond that was forged during this time. They continued to teach despite the unimaginable grief that they were facing from losing one of their closest and dearest friends.”

Walton said this past week, teachers and staff at AES welcomed a new teacher to their team with open arms, and explained how without hesitation, district leaders and staff provided “constant support” to the students and staff by “wrapping their arms around them.”

She recognized GISD Superintendent Jeremy Glenn, GISD Student Services Coordinator Leah Dawson, Director of Curriculum and Instruction Stacie Brown and Director of Special Education Shelly Curtsinger for their strong dedication to the students and staff during this time.

“While we never may be able to repay them, the beauty is that we don't have to because that's what family does,” Walton said. “Family loves and supports each other during difficult times. In the darkest sky, they were the brightest stars, and we are grateful for them. We are grateful and incredibly proud to work for Granbury ISD.”

Moore’s daughter-in-law Sarah Miller, and two of her granddaughters came to honor Moore, along with several GISD staff: AES Assistant Principal Mallory Myers, AES Teacher Connie Oelschig, AES Teacher Kristin Murry, AES Instructional Specialist Haley Briggs, and AES Counselor Jill Jernigan.

“During her 16-year career, (Moore) impacted hundreds of students’ lives, and she is deeply missed by all that knew and loved her,” Walton said. “What a legacy Susan lives, where we all strive to live and love like she did.”

ashley@hcnews.com | 817-573-1243