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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Media Tech Teacher is District's First Impact Award Winner

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Following the tragic loss of Timberview Assistant Football Coach Cody McCarty in October, members of Mansfield ISD and the community searched for ways to show support to Timberview High School.

John Tarrant, Media Tech Teacher at Ben Barber Career Tech Academy, and his TV Production class wanted to send a message to Timberview High School that the entire district cared about them and was standing behind them. Using their creativity and resources, they proved that video can be an incredibly powerful tool.

According to Tarrant, their original idea was to create a video to show on the jumbotron at the Timberview football game, but as his students became more excited about the project, it evolved into a masterful video message that would impact the Mansfield ISD community in a big way.

The video features students and staff from across the district, who stood united to send one strong message about Mansfield ISD – "We are Family."

Tarrant produced the video project, but gives a great deal of credit to his TV Studio Production Class, and one student in particular.

“Colin Tate has been awesome,” Tarrant said of the senior from Frontier High School. “He used to go to Timberview, so he still had a lot of really strong ties.”

As a Media Tech Teacher, Tarrant works to show students HOW to tell a story, but it is up to them to uncover the stories that will make a true impact on others. Tarrant admits that teaching such a specialized class certainly has its distinct challenges and rewards.

“There’s really no set way to do it – it’s not like math,” said Tarrant. “Certain kids might want to have a career as a news broadcaster and some might want to be a hot shot director and producer in California, but you just have to find a way with every single kid to find their niche.”

Tarrant works to identify the unique strengths in each of his students in hopes that he can help them channel their talent. His love for teaching does not go unnoticed by his students and fellow educators, especially Stephanie Mills, AV/Communication and Video/Production teacher. Mills was new to Mansfield ISD this school year and was quickly impressed by Tarrant's work ethic and commitment to the success of his students. As soon as she heard about The Impact Award, she submitted his name as a nominee.

“Over the first semester of school I saw how much passion Mr. Tarrant has instilled in his kids,” Mills said. “That really struck me being new here, how important it is that they bonded together in a time of tragedy. I just wanted him to be recognized and honored for it.”

Upon receiving the district’s very first Impact Award, Tarrant was overwhelmed and quickly used his special moment to give a shout out to his students.

“It makes me feel good that my students want to work hard for me and help their teacher look good some days,” he joked.

On behalf of the MISD Administration, congratulations to John Tarrant, our very first Impact Award Winner!

The Impact Award was established to recognize individual staff members, departments, campuses or other groups that have promoted teamwork and unity by initiating a program or event that made a positive impact within Mansfield ISD and the community. Impact Award winners may be nominated by staff, students or community members.

Winners are selected each month throughout the school year. Staff members who receive The Impact Award are eligible for other district honors.

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