Governor Gregoire visits Granite Falls to honor Andrea PetersonMayor Romack proclaims May BY PAM STEVENS | EDITOR As you drove into Granite Falls last Thursday, signs around town shared the excitement of having the National Teacher of the Year, Andrea Peterson back from Washington D.C. and her visit with the President.
Governor Christine Gregoire and State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Terry Bergeson came to Granite Falls to honor Peterson in a celebration sponsored by the Granite Falls School District.
“It’s an exciting time to be a student in Granite Falls,” Gregiore told students from the Granite Falls district schools all of whom attended the celebration.
“Mrs. Peterson has found a way to make learning exciting and fun. The music program in this district is flourishing,” she added.
It was evident by the musical performances during the celebration that music is an important part of the Granite Falls school system.
Bergeson spoke of the impact that Peterson has already had on the community of Granite Falls by winning this prestigious award. Bergeson told the students how Peterson spoke of them during her address at the White House and how proud she was of them and the community.
“Congratulations to Granite Falls,” she said. “She (Peterson) is a leader among some of the greatest teachers in the world.”
The celebration also included Mayor Lyle Romack proclaiming May 10, 2007 “Andrea Peterson 2007 National Teacher of the Year Day” in Granite Falls.
When Peterson stood up to speak to the crowd she received a standing ovation.
Throwing her prepared speech aside, she told of her experience the previous day when she was interviewed by a local radio station.
She told the students that the radio host started making fun of Granite Falls because it was such a small town. The comments made her mad.
Peterson shared some of her experiences growing up in a small town where some believed that they couldn’t accomplish much because of where they were brought up. She let the students know that it doesn’t matter how big your hometown is, everyone can get an education and accomplish their dreams.
“Granite Falls is an amazing place,” Peterson said. We have great teachers in Granite Falls and I got to brag about them.”
Peterson made sure that the students knew that this award belonged not only to her but to each of them and to the entire town.
“You’re the national students of the Year,” she told them. “It is Granite Falls community day, not just Andrea Peterson Day.”
Peterson was also awarded gifts that will help her in her year abroad while she is fulfilling her duties as National Teacher of the Year. One of those gifts included the use of a new car donated by Bickford Ford-Mercury in Snohomish.
“You are truly an inspiration to others,” Bickford said.
Peterson has been teaching for ten years all of which has been in the Granite Falls School District. She recently gave birth to her first child, a little girl who will travel with her throughout the next year in her role as National Teacher of the Year.