Oak Grove High School instructor wins Golden Apple Award

Oak Grove teacher, coach plucks final TEC Golden Apple Award
Published: May. 18, 2023 at 6:14 PM CDT
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LAMAR COUNTY, Miss. (WDAM) - Alana Donahue, Oak Grove High School science teacher and archery coach, is the final Golden Apple Award Winner for the 2022-2023 school year.

An Oak Grove High School parent said Donahue brought out the best in his daughter.

“My child, Makayla, she suffered from anxiety real bad,” Marcus Burkett said. “She was shelled up. We never anticipated on her participating in archery or something like that, but ever since she met Ms. Donahue, she came out her shell. She loves archery. She speaks more, she talks more,”

His daughter, Makayla’s sentiments about Donahue were sweet and simple.

“I love her very much,” Makayla Burkett said. “She is the one who showed me love and everything.”

Oak Grove High School Principal Helen Price gathered all of Donohue’s students into a room to surprise her. When she stepped into the room, the kids screamed congratulations.

Donahue covered her face with her hands and hugged her students.

She said she felt dizzy from the excitement and attention.

She didn’t take any time to focus on herself. She gave her award to Makayla Burkett.

After all, Donahue said it’s all about the students.

“I’m really glad to have these guys in my life,” Donahue said.

She talked about the bond she shares with the students and the joy they have when they are all together at the end of the day for archery.

“We survive the day,” Donahue said. “If we could just make it to fourth block, just make it to fourth block, that’s our family, that’s our time, that’s our highlight of the day.”

Donahue said the connection she has with her students goes beyond four years of high school.

“The kids that graduated and come back at the beginning of the year, mentor them and help with the newbies,” Donahue said. “I’ve been to several of their weddings over the years. This is my ninth year coaching,” Donahue said.

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