May 17, 2021
Prince Honors Educators of the Year for 2020-2021 School Year
Pictured Left to Right: Karen Barrett, Clark Daniel, & Donna Benito
The mission statement of Prince Avenue Christian School is “to partner with Christian families to provide scripturally based discipleship while pursuing excellence in academics, fine arts, and athletics from a biblical worldview.” None of this mission would be possible without the highly qualified and extraordinarily talented, dedicated, and godly teachers that are hands-on with Prince students day in and day out.
In the spirit of recognizing the commitment and dedication of the faculty at PACS, each year the school recognizes individual teachers as the Colossians 3:23 Educators of the Year, nominated by their peers as remarkable and doing “everything as unto the Lord”.
High school history teacher Karen Barrett, middle school Bible teacher Clark Daniel, and lower school science teacher Donna Benito are the 2020-2021 Prince Educators of the Year. Each received a crystal vase and a cash donation which are given each year by a generous and anonymous donor.
Karen Barrett has taught high school history at Prince for three years and has been in education for 23. She currently teaches AP Government and Politics, Economics, and Modern World History. Mrs. Barrett also coaches High School Academic Team and is the faculty sponsor for Girls Bible Study. Mrs. Barrett has had two children graduate from Prince (’99, ’02) and currently has two grandchildren attending Prince, so she has the unique distinction of having been a Prince parent, grandparent, and teacher.
Mrs. Barrett’s colleagues describe her as having the special ability to hold students to high standards while also developing meaningful relationships. “She does more than is required to help students succeed in and out of the classroom. She meets with students outside of class, writes references, hosts students in her home, and welcomes them into her life.”
Mrs. Barrett appreciates the family atmosphere at Prince and the ability to share her faith. “I am so grateful to be at a school with both high educational standards and a strong Biblical foundation. This is so important for our students because they see that choosing faith does not require you to leave your ability to think and reason behind. My prayer is that students will also learn that God can use them now to affect future generations and bring revival to our country.”
Dr. Clark Daniel has taught middle school Bible at Prince for three years also serving as Middle School Chaplain this school year. He has coached tennis and bass fishing and helped with Fine Arts. Before coming to Prince, Dr. Daniel served as a youth minister and a college adjunct professor.
Dr. Daniel’s colleagues explain that he has a unique ability to connect with middle school students. “In a year marked with uncertainty, tension, and sadness, he provided a positive and energetic atmosphere in his classroom and with his co-workers. He has a heart for his students, and his love for them is clear in every interaction.”
Dr. Daniel appreciates working with other teachers and administrators whose main goal is teaching from a Christian worldview. “One of my hopes is that what the students learn here at PACS prepares them to stand firm in their Christian faith when they leave.”
Donna Benito has been in education for 20 years and at Prince Avenue for three. She has established the lower school science program as a fully equipped interactive science lab complete with specimens, insects, books, charts, and specialized equipment.
Mrs. Benito’s colleagues describe her as a teacher who knows and loves her students creating a wonderful classroom atmosphere that fosters learning. “She is very humble, caring, and kind to every child she teaches and every teacher she works with.”
Mrs. Benito explains that teaching at Prince has enabled her to be intentional in caring for the whole child – spiritually, emotionally, educationally, socially, and physically. “My desire and hope for the students at Prince is that they would stay curious, develop a love for learning, and always seek the Lord.”