Cunningham named Edison High School’s Teacher of the Month

Sara Cunningham

RICHMOND — Sara Cunningham has been recognized as Edison High School’s Teacher of the Month for April.

Cunningham, of Steubenville, graduated from West Liberty University in 2011 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art Education. She is currently working on her Master of Art degree in Art Education from Kent State University and also has an associate’s degree in Applied Science in Sign Language Interpreting from West Virginia Northern Community College. She began teaching as a substitute in Jefferson County public schools and after one semester acquired a full-time art teaching position at her alma mater, Catholic Central High School, where she taught fine and computer arts for two years and was the Key Club adviser.

She has been teaching art education in the Edison Local School District for the past five years. Since she began at EHS, she has been encouraging her students to open their minds to a new world. In her classroom, students develop problem-solving and critical-thinking skills that are essential for academic and personal growth, all while they acquire an appreciation for art, both the process and the history. Her excitement and love for art shows through in her teaching and she loves to learn about art, talk about art and make art with her students.

Building positive relationships with students is Cunningham’s goal as an educator. She is an enthusiastic teacher and her work doesn’t end at the bell. She is an active member of the Caring Council, a group of teachers that goes above and beyond their basic teaching duties to reach out to students and give them the support they need to succeed in all aspects of their lives. She is also the advisor of the Edison Chapter of the National Beta Club, a community service organization that encourages students to reach out to the less fortunate. Cunningham, along with Beta Club members, has organized multiple food drives for local pantries, collected donations for the Jefferson County Humane Society and volunteered at the Cancer Dietary Initiative, just to name a few activities. She also orchestrates the recycling program in conjunction with JB Green Team to educate students on the importance of the environment and has her art students participate in the Trashy Art Contest each year at the Fort Steuben Mall.

Outside of school, Cunningham is a member of the First Westminster Presbyterian Church in Steubenville and participates in multiple community services through her church. She also belongs to the Steubenville Art Association where she has assisted in creating two of the Steubenville Nutcrackers, including Eddie the Wildcat, and an egg for the Great Steubenville Eggshibition. She loves to travel and has visited art museums all over the world, including New York City, Italy and Spain. This experience has enhanced her education, which she shares with students in her classroom. During summer vacation, she likes to go to music concerts and visit family around the United States.