LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Mazie Jones

Position: Retiring Special Education Teacher
School: Academy I Middle School
School District: Jersey City Public Schools
City, State: Jersey City, NJ

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Mazie Jones was nominated by her principal, Meg Freeman.

Ms. Jones is someone who is passionate about education and very dedicated to her students and school community. She will be retiring after 37 years in education, 34 of which were spent in the Jersey City Public Schools, a Title I district. During her years of service to students, she also raised her own five children. Ms. Jones was active in her church community and worked hard to serve others. In short, to know Ms. Jones is to love her. 

As a teacher, Ms. Jones was extremely dedicated to her students. She taught self-contained special education students that follow a modified curriculum. She managed to create a warm environment where students were excited to learn. Ms. Jones was firm, yet kind, and she guided students through challenging activities and pushed them to succeed. She had high expectations for her students and held them accountable to meet those standards. When something did not work in her classroom, she tried something else. She was quick to adapt her plans and teaching strategies to make a lesson work better for students. She incorporated life skills into her lessons, connecting academics to their practical application so her students could succeed beyond the school walls.

Ms. Jones is not only dedicated to the education of her students, but she is also continually looking to learn and grow herself. She has her Masters in administration and supervision. She was always eager to learn new strategies and looked for opportunities to improve her craft. Her constant desire to educate herself in order to help others is an inspiration.

Ms. Jones was committed to her students and their families. She was an advocate for her students’ academic needs, working within the building and with families to ensure her students received the necessary support. She communicated with parents frequently. Ms. Jones gave parents her phone number so they could ask her questions, and she would contact the parents to remind them of important information. 

Ms. Jones has been a pivotal part of her school community, arriving early each morning to supervise students who were dropped off an hour before school started. She would help students of all ages and ability levels with their homework. She helped organize the African American History Bowl for many years at her school. This helped the students recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of African Americans through academic achievement. 

"Perhaps the greatest example of her dedication to students occurred last year. Her beloved husband died suddenly, and after taking ten days to grieve, she returned to work," said Freeman. "Upon her return, I urged her to make sure she cared for herself. Her reply to me was that her students needed her, and so she was back at school to support them. Her dedication to students - even when she was personally suffering - is one of countless examples of why she will be incredibly missed as she retires this year. We had plans to celebrate her this June, but this will have to be postponed. We celebrate her in spirit, knowing that the impact she has made on children will live on as her legacy."



Comments (23)


Kathy Mazyck Posted 1 months ago

I've had the pleasure of working with Mrs. Jones for over 10 years and her dedication to Jersey City Public Schools has been an inspiration. She is a great role model and has even encouraged me to aim higher in my educational aspirations. Mrs. Jones is also a great listener and loves to pray with you when necessary. Mrs. Jones is a wonderful person and would help others in need. Mrs. Jones is very active in her church, providing counseling and outreach within her community. She loves working in the Special Education Department as well as interacting within Academy I's educational community. All of the students admire her and would even seek her for advice and encouragement. We will definitely miss her presence at Academy I because she gave a wealth of knowledge, shared her experiences, reminding us to learn from even some mistakes she made during her time with the district. I pray for many blessings to come her way..

John McClure Posted 1 months ago

Ms. Mazie Jones is a woman of God that embodies strength and stability. Her love for people is very encouraging and I’m glad she represents a strong family, unprecedented faith and fun. She is truly a champion and I’m glad we are showering her with love and recognition. The best is yet to come!!!!! We celebrate you in this endeavor Sincerely, John McClure

Robyn Drag Posted 1 months ago

Ms. Jones has a lot of love in her heart and showers it on her students on a daily basis. No matter how a morning may begin, they can always depend on her smile that greets them when they arrive to school.

Claudette Shepherd Posted 1 months ago

Congratulations!! Well deserved! You are a beautiful person inside and out. You have impacted many lives, including mine. I love and appreciate you!!

Kathy Mazyck Posted 1 months ago

I've had the pleasure of working with Mrs. Jones for over 10 years and her dedication to Jersey City Public Schools has been an inspiration. She is a great role model and has even encouraged me to aim higher in my educational aspirations. Mrs. Jones is also a great listener and loves to pray with you when necessary. Mrs. Jones is a wonderful person and would help others in need. Mrs. Jones is very active in her church, providing counseling and outreach within her community. She loves working in the Special Education Department as well as interacting within Academy I's educational community. All of the students admire her and would even seek her for advice and encouragement. We will definitely miss her presence at Academy I because she gave a wealth of knowledge, shared her experiences, reminding us to learn from even some mistakes she made during her time with the district. I pray for many blessings to come her way..

Shirley Hall Posted 1 months ago

Mazie is an Excelllent mother. She is a great educator and child of God

Stephanie Salters Posted 1 months ago

Congratulations- Mazie! I have had the privilege of being both a coworker and friend of Mazie Jones for the past 18 years in total. Her love for her students, friends, and family have been evident day in and day out! The biggest testimony to her and her character is how deeply rich her faith is. She is a woman of God, looks out for others, and uplifts anyone who knows her! To say her students and colleagues are going to miss her, is an understatement! May God watch over her in her retirement and allow her to enjoy these Golden years! ???? Love ya! Stephanie

Gregory Davis Posted 1 months ago

Sister Mazie is a very nice person. She always goes above and beyond. If there is anything she can do to help she always there. I have never met anyone who was so genuine, courteous , and kind. She always has a smile on her face.

Linda Nichols Posted 1 months ago

Mazie, you are a loving sister with a sweet spirit. You are a God fearing child of God who loves the Lord. Congratulations on your retirement, may God continue to bless you, guide & carry you through the rest of your journey. God blessings.

Veronica Krause Posted 1 months ago

It’s so exciting to know that Mrs Mazie Jones is being nominated for this great distinction for which she is so deserving. Ms Jones always makes time to collaborate with Child Study Team members to ensure that each child in her care meets with success academically and emotionally. Moreover, Ms Jones could be approached by any colleague, weighed down by circumstance, and she would readily offer them her words of wisdom, heartfelt prayers, and beautiful smile. Not having Ms Jones in the building as a colleague and friend is going to be so difficult to get used to, but after four decades of service she has earned the right to spend quality time with her close knit family including her beautiful grandchildren. I am certain Ms Mazie Jones will find a calling on her spirit to minister to children in one way or another in this next stage of her life. Shalom

Lorraine Bryant Posted 1 months ago

congratulations sister i’m extremely happy for you i wish you nothing but success abundance and prosperity???? you go sister, such a Beautiful loving kind person

Tanaja Posted 1 months ago

My grandmother has been an Congratulations grandma ! I exemplary professional throughout her teaching career. Grandma, I wish you all the best. You deserve this, for your many years of service and accomplishments. I love you !!!

Eric Payne Posted 1 months ago

Congratulations Mazie, you are such a blessing to so many. May you light continue to shine through to all that you encounter.

Rika Que Posted 1 months ago

Mom, I am so proud of you and all of your accomplishments. You’ve done it all. You’ve bearded five children while working and continuing your education almost all of our lives (lol) You’ve graduated and achieved your Bachelors and Masters.. And now you’re on your way to retirement.. HALLELUJAH... and though it all you’ve somehow maintained to be such a GREAT Mom...thank you and may GOD continue to BLESS you on your new journey!! LOVE RIKA

Charlene Jones Posted 1 months ago

I would like to say thank you for nominating my mom for this award. She is one of the most hard working, caring and generous people I know and I am blessed to have her as my mother. Mom you are deserving of this and so much more. Your latter will be greater than your former. Love you! Blessings..

Tashima Jones Posted 1 months ago

Ms. Jones is very well educated highly recommend dependable loving caring person. She loves what she does. She’s a person person.. she’s loves to interact with others. She’s very passionate with what she does in the educational field. She’s GOD fearing and believes in treating ppl with the upmost respect. Good luck Ms Jones May God Bless you

Martha Garcia Posted 1 months ago

Ms. Jones, I'm going to miss your bright smile, radiant energy, and exquisite fashion sense when you greet me, "Good morning!" Thank you for your kindness, love, and support to the students and staff. I've had the pleasure of getting to know you during my time at Academy 1 and you were always willing to give a helping hand to a teacher or student. Your presence will be truly missed at school! Wishing you all the best on your retirement that is well deserved! I know you will continue to spread cheer to those you meet. Looking forward to celebrating you at your party. Sincerely, Martha Garcia

Caroline Detz Posted 1 months ago

Congratulations on your your well deserved retirement. Your dedication to education and your support and love for your students will be remembered. Your beautiful smile and great fashion will be missed. Best wishes to you!

Janine Reed Posted 1 months ago

I had the privilege of working alongside Mrs. Jones in a middle school inclusion classroom setting. The kindness and compassion she showered upon our students is something that will always stand out to me. Her "no's" were always loving ones and in dealing with challenging behaviors I never once heard her raise her voice. In Mrs. Jones, students saw the kind of person they could become - someone with grace, a big heart and impeccable fashion sense! Perhaps it was her vestiges of southern charm and growing up in a big farming family that made our classroom feel like home, but whatever the case working with Mrs. Jones meant to work with a smile on your face. I am grateful for our time together and for her years of service to the children of Jersey City. Wishing you all the best in retirement, Mazie!

Eric Marto Posted 1 months ago

Ms. Jones, Working with you over the past 11 years has been a blessing! I will miss your cheerful "Hi Mr. Marto" in the halls no matter what time of day it was. The students at Academy 1 and the Jersey City Public Schools are so lucky to have had you as a dedicated educator. You will be missed. Enjoy your retirement! -Mr. E. Marto

Craig Kelly Posted 1 months ago

I have worked with Ms Jones for such a long time and Academy 1 will have a piece of it's soul missing when we return in September. Mazie has always been so positive and supportive of her students, as well as of the staff. She is the definition of the "early bird", up before the sun exercising and preparing for her students each day, and when students would drag themselves into school in the morning Ms. Jone would always greet them with a smile and a kind word. Enjoy your Retirement Ms. Jones, it is well earned!

John Hughes Posted 1 months ago

Mazie exemplifies vocation over job. She has treated her students and felllow staff as family. A consummate professional. You will be missed!!!

Alexander Nikodem Posted 1 months ago

Ms. Jones is an extremely caring and compassionate educator. Since the time I started working at Academy 1, I have admired her ability to always speak to her students in a way that they understand while maintaining great respect and thoughtfulness. Each day, while walking by her classroom, and listening in, I was always sure that her students were being appropriately challenged, mentored, and loved. I don't think we will be able to find another teacher quite like her. Ms. Jones, although I have only gotten to work with you for two years, I hope you know how special that time was and that you have left a lasting impression on me. Thank you.