Bobcat News

HOPE – Two educational innovators have been named Hope Rotary Club Teachers of the Year for 2022.

After a year in which the local Rotarians gave their nod to every teacher in the Hope Public Schools as a result of their response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact upon public education, the Hope Rotary Club focused this year upon two experienced educators who bring innovation to the classroom.

Jackie Brady, named May 2 as the Hope/Hempstead County Chamber of Commerce Educator of the Year, was cited as the Rotary Secondary Teacher of the Year as she retires from public education.

Brady teaches the EAST program at the Hope Academy of Public Service, where she began the innovative project-based program.

“The last five years, she has dedicated herself to HAPS and EAST and shown students, staff and the community the joy of education, service learning and leadership,” HAPS Principal Dr. Carol Ann Duke noted in her nomination letter.

A graduate of Texas A&M University with a degree in Business Communications, Brady took on the computer-focused EAST program five years ago and built it into an outreach for the Hope Public Schools through partnerships with Rainbow of Challenges, Hope in Action, Hope for Paws, The Call of Hempstead County and others, Dr. Duke said.

EAST students were active in the development of the Denny’s Place Garden and Outdoor Classroom on the HAPS campus, as well as the Reclaiming Edith Brown project that recovered HPS history and recycled and repaired outdated equipment and furnishings stored in the former Edith Brown campus building.

Brady is active in Hope community life, church activity, and participates in Hempstead and Lafayette counties’ farmers’ markets through her ownership of Cowpen Bottoms Farm.

Reyenga has taught in the Hope Public Schools 15 years and has been a public-school teacher almost 40 years. She is a graduate of Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia with a BSE degree in Elementary Education with a concentration on grades K-6.

Reyenga currently teaches in the Kindergarten program at Clinton Primary School, where CPS Principal Ashlea Stewart said she is a force for positive attitudes and environment on campus.

“She utilizes a variety of teaching methods to address students’ learning styles and provides positive reinforcement and encouragement,” Stewart said. “She videos herself reading to share with families during holiday breaks and weekends to promote learning at home.”

Reyenga is known for her excellent rapport with students and staff on campus, and Stewart said she is a dependable volunteer for after school events.

Hope Rotary Club Elementary Teacher of the Year Cynthia Reyenga, second left, and Secondary Teacher of the Year Jackie Brady, center left, are congratulated by Clinton Primary School Principal Ashlea Stewart, left, Hope Academy of Public Service Principal Dr. Carol Ann Duke, center right, University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana Chancellor Dr. Christine Holt, second right, and Hope Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Jonathan Crossley, right.. – Hope Public Schools