Alabama Teacher Receives The First-ever $1,000 Grant from this Alpha Kappa Alpha Chapter

Jeniqua Johnson, a first-grade teacher at Southview Elementary School, received a $1,000 grant from the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority’s Eta Xi Omega Chapter. Johnson is the first recipient of the sorority’s new First Year Educator Award.

The sorority members stated that they nominated Johnson because they were aware of the hardships that teachers, particularly first-year instructors, experience.

They told WBRC, “We’re doing this to support local educators in West Alabama. About 50% of teachers who have been teaching for three years leave the field, so it’s a critical time area at this time. We’re trying to motivate and encourage to stay in the education field,” said Shante’ Morton, the Tuscaloosa Chapter President of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.

Johnson expressed her astonishment at receiving the award and stated that she intended to utilize the monies to improve student progress.

“I was very surprised. I [was] really nervous because I was thinking it can’t be,” Johnson remarked.

Johnson indicated that the money will be used to buy headphones for her 17 students. According to the Tuscaloosa Thread, Johnson also stated that the money would provide her children with extra resources to support varied learning. She believes it will benefit her English language learners and autistic students significantly.

Johnson is “special because of her unique ability to connect with her students and parents,” according to Southview Elementary Principal Ronika Amerson. She has a sweet voice yet is strong with her students. I often refer to her as a ‘quiet storm.’ She is data-driven and goes far and beyond to ensure students’ success.”

Dr. Shanté Morton, President of the Eta Xi Omega Chapter, said, “The first year of teaching is a period of immense growth. First-year teachers learn not only about their students but also about themselves as educators.”

During a lunch period at Southview Elementary with kids, staff, and other educators, Eta Xi Omega graduate chapter members handed the grant to Johnson.

Sue’s Flowers in Northport, Alabama, presented her with a $1,000 grant, a certificate acknowledging her service, balloons, and a wonderful floral arrangement.

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