ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – After 25-years in the classroom, Jeannie Stark says last year was the hardest. Stark says she became a teacher because of her upbringing.

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Raised in a strong Southern Baptist home, helping others was important and led her to become a teacher. The pandemic brought hardships to her and her students but she always believed in her students. One of her favorites is hearing about how her students are doing after high school, some have become architects.

Stark is currently the Early Systems Resource Teacher at Manzano High School. However, it was her efforts at Del Norte High School as a special education teacher that got her nominated for a Golden Apple Award. “I am so humbled to be a Golden Apple because there are teachers out there that are amazing,” said Stark.