Second-grade teacher recognized for work in and out of class: ‘I love what I do’

Second-grade teacher recognized for work in and out of class: ‘I love what I do’

KING WILLIAM COUNTY, VA (WWBT) - It’s story time boys and girls!

You’re about to learn about a committed, passionate, and dedicated second-grade teacher at Cool Springs Primary School in King William County.

Her name is Heather Klakos and that love she has for her kids goes well beyond the classroom.

“I have a sign in my classroom that says ‘once they’re in my class they’re forever my kids,'” she said. "When I see something like a fire affecting my kids, and I call them ‘my kids,’ it really hurts my feelings.”

Last year, one of her second-graders was involved in a house fire. The family made it out safely, but it definitely left its mark, Klakos says.

“It really bothered the little girl in my class, so I just wanted to help her in any way that I could," she said. "So I asked some of the fellow teachers here and friends in the community, if I could help raise money for her, and just get some clothes for the family, her brother her dad. I just tried to make this her happy place when things at home weren’t going so well.”

Klakos took initiative when she didn’t have to, all because she cared. Her selflessness, is just one of the reasons why Principal Rachel Ball is so thankful to have her in the building.

“She doesn’t just care about their academic growth here at school - she carries that into their everyday life, and when children go through their rough spots, she’s there for them,” said Ball.

Ball, School Superintendent David White, and a few representatives from the Henrico Federal Credit Union took the stroll down to her classroom to recognize Klakos recently as NBC12′s “Excellence In Education” award recipient.

“I love what I do, and I love that I could make a difference in the lives of these children and that’s why I’m here," she said.

And she has her mother to thank for where she is today.

“I had an awesome role model from a little girl growing up. I always watched my mom growing up and I always wanted to be like her and have the relationship with the kids because they loved her. And then when it was my turn, I get to have my own classroom and try to have an impact like my mom did."

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