Sunshine Franklin was nominated by her husband, Randy Franklin.
"When I first met my wife and she told me she was a teacher, I did not realize how special of a teacher she was," said Mr. Franklin. "One day, I went to lunch with her and a former student of hers. During that lunch, the former student told me how she was a troubled teen who struggled at home. She explained that my wife would allow her to eat lunches with her, and eventually, she ate lunch with her every day so she wouldn't get in trouble or fights. During those lunches, my wife would explain how her decisions can have consequences, speak life into her, and let her know she has different paths she can choose in her own life. The student explained how meaningful those lunches were, and how life-changing they became."
"Years later, my wife still communicates with this student," said Mr. Franklin. "She tells my wife how lucky she was to have her as a teacher, and without my wife there to guide her throughout middle school and high school, she would not where she is today. This student is now a mother of two and a working wife."
Mrs. Franklin puts in countless hours to ensure all of her students succeed and understand how much potential they have to be successful. She mentors students during her lunches, buys items for her students in need, and holds the highest of expectations with students who others give up on. She is usually given the students others have the most difficulty with, and she is able to get them to succeed, not only in class or on state tests, but in life.
"I feel she is the LifeChanger of the year, every year," said Mr. Franklin. "She has a record of success on the state test with her students. More importantly, she has helped students understand that in order to succeed they need to think more positively about themselves and believe in themselves. She was given the opportunity to be an instructional coach to help struggling ELA teachers, but she gave up that postion in order to be able to take on a class that was considered difficult. While she insists she wants to be an administrator one day, she best serves the students in her class, in my opinion. She takes her job very seriously...Numerous times, she has sad, "In order for teachers to be taken as professionals, they need to act as professionals all the time, not just at school."