HARVEST, Ala. — Sparkman 9th Grade School is home to many amazing teachers, but Ms. Christina McBeth takes the cake.
McBeth teaches ninth-grade English and she realized she had a calling for teaching when she was in the second grade.
"I had a teacher that would always line up the students in the front that were poor, and would allow the students to make fun of them based on what they had on," McBeth explained. "I could see my tears collect on the floor. So, I promised myself right then and there that if I was ever a teacher I'd be such a champion for them, I'd never let anybody hurt them like this."
She turned her pain into passion, impacting young lives in the Tennessee Valley.
Ninth-grader Olivia Belyeu says, "For her to be an African American teacher, I see her achieve which makes me feel like I can achieve."
Not only has McBeth overcome many obstacles throughout her life, she is also the first person in her family to earn four degrees, an accomplishment that she doesn't take lightly.
"So I let them know, if I can do it and get four degrees, then I need for you to do it because you can be the example in your household." McBeth said.
Teaching is more than a job, to her it's a commitment. She's a champion for her students and she makes sure they have everything she didn't.
"I would be protective of them," McBeth said. "They deserve someone to be a champion for them. To be active for them. To be protective of them, but to still love them. To give them that tough love if they need it, but to still protect them because they're vulnerable and they just want to learn and they don't need to be attacked in any form."