A Columbus teacher is part of the state’s campaign to attract more folks into the education profession.
Eric Crouch, a fifth-grade teacher at Double Churches Elementary School, is featured in the “Why I Teach” video, the fourth installment of the “Real Teachers, Real Voices” campaign, conducted by the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement.
In November, Crouch was honored as the only Georgian among the 35 U.S. educators to receive a 2016 Milken Educator Award. The awards are nicknamed the “Oscars of Teaching.”
Crouch, who serves on Gov. Nathan Deal’s Teacher Advisory Committee, was among the 10 semifinalists for the Muscogee County School District’s 2016 Teacher of the Year Award. In January 2015, Crouch was among the five teachers featured on North America’s largest billboard, displayed in New York City’s Times Square, in the advertisement for DonorsChoose.org, a website that helps teachers raise money for educational projects. Crouch’s fundraising enabled his classroom to receive items totaling at least $20,000, such as 20 iPads, 20 iPods, a 3D printer and hundreds of books.
“School is such an amazing place,” Crouch said in GOSA’s news release. “It is a place where children from all different walks of life come together to try and find common solutions to the challenges we will face tomorrow. ... Teaching is very rewarding and fulfilling.
“It wasn’t until later in my life that I found my purpose. When I got to college I had a professor who showed me the true art and beauty of teaching, and it was then that I knew what teaching could be for me. It was there that I found my hope and my inspiration, and I wanted to give that same hope and inspiration to my students. That is why I became a teacher.”