Congratulations to Matthew Bradley from Apalachee High School for receiving the Georgia Power Spark Award of $500! Partner Pal Georgia Power offered this award during the 2022-2023 school year to a middle school or high school teacher who ignites a spark in their students. Coach Bradley will use the award money to buy new equipment for the AHS weight room.
Three of his fellow teachers nominated him. They wrote:
"Our strength coach, Matthew Bradley, has ignited a new passion and work ethic in our students in the weight room. His daily enthusiasm for helping our student-athletes getting stronger and faster is exhibited in the student's actions and efforts to lift weights under his direction. He pushes our students by encouraging them and building relationships with all the sports that lift weights at school. He has brought unity to all sports at Apalachee." - Robert Hancock (AHS Health/PE Teacher)
"He has made a huge impact in not just our football program, but our entire school as well. The energy he brings to every block in the weight room is phenomenal. He trains and motivates everyone in there! The hardest class to teach every block of every day is weight training. It is physically and mentally draining but you wouldn't know that if you watched him work. He has done a great job of building solid relationships with our students and the coaches of other sports! His energy, enthusiasm and positivity are such a wonderful thing to see in an educator. Students, not just student athletes, enjoy his energy and methods to motivate every class period of everyday as do his extra-curricular duties. If you need a spark, Coach Bradley will provide it! The $500 would help to purchase a TV or projector to install in the weight room so he can have a way of broadcasting that day's work out to everyone in the weight room. Currently he has to hand write it on a board which is hard for everyone to see and monitor while they are working out." - Tony Lotti’s (AHS Health/PE Teacher and Head Football Coach)
"Matt brings more energy in this school building than probably all teachers combined. To motivate and make a positive impacts on our student athletes, it is imperative you have someone who can bring it every day, and Coach Bradley embodies that spark!" - Tyler Rowland (AHS Health/PE Teacher and Basketball Coach)
Thank you to Georgia Power for recognizing Mr. Bradley’s BOLD teaching!
Barrow Arts and Sciences Academy Teacher Dr. Anne Locke Ridgway captured what the Spark Award means in her nomination for another Barrow BOLD teacher.
"The time and effort that can go into one little spark igniting a flame is known to some who honor the craft of building a fire. It takes the right chemicals, kindling, and tender care. A spark does not spontaneously happen on its own, nor does it continue to ignite those around it without the preparation and constant attention to development. Once the spark has ignited the others, it has to continue the process until the fire is able to stand on its own, but as we well know, it still has to be fed from time to time to ensure that when it does die out, the lasting coals are what remain perpetuating the heat of warmth around us. A teacher must be willing to be the purveyor of this spark by being knowledgeable and adaptable with regard to the curriculum, lesson planning, and students, all while soliciting student feedback to allow for authentic learning to occur. The winner of the Georgia Power Spark Award ignites sparks in students and colleagues each day."