Lowcountry Strong: Teacher of the Year honored in unique way

Updated: Apr. 29, 2020 at 6:29 AM EDT
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MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCSC) - A Lowcountry algebra teacher got a surprise during a recent faculty Zoom meeting.

Last week, Oceanside Collegiate Acaemy teacher Jenny Casell, who hosts the video meetings to go over lessons, noticed something odd during one of those meetings.

“I see our principal, Mrs. Corley, in my driveway,” Cassell said. "I remember seeing my car, seeing my husband on the Zoom call, and I was just kind of shocked.”

She opened the door and saw the principal, former Teacher of the Year, school resource officer and the Varsity basketball coach dressed as the mascot.

“It was the nicest surprise,” Cassell said. “I was so confused but just so happy to see them. I didn’t know what the surprise was, I just couldn’t believe they were at my house.”

The group showed up with a crown and a sash to announce Cassell was chosen as this year’s Teacher of the Year.

“I was very emotional and surprised and kind of honored they came to see me and it was something I’ll never forget," she added.

Principal Brenda Corley came up with the elaborate plan.

“She’s got flair so I’m like, I can’t do a virtual teacher of the year celebration for Jenny Cassell, I’ve got to go big,” Corley said. "I describe her as the heart of Oceanside because since day one, she was an original Landshark, she was my first teacher hire and I’m just blessed I’ve had her along for the ride.”

Corley said in addition to Cassell’s ability to keep students engaged while teaching algebra, she is also in charge of school tours and keeps up with former students even years later.

“She just keeps getting better,” Corley added.

Cassell said the teachers, administrators and students have been incredible during this time of quarantine and wanted to give a special shout out to the senior class.

“They are such a special, amazing group of kids,” she said."We actually started the school with them as freshmen. They’re going to do great things and we are all really really proud of the class of 2020.”

The school released its plans to honor the seniors with a parade on Thursday.

If you know someone or a group of people making the Lowcountry a better place during this time, you can tell us about it by filling out this form. You can also email Abbey O’Brien at and you might see them recognized on Live5News.

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