Indian Trail Health Science teacher David Nutter is doing what he was destined to do and the Teacher of the Year Award from the Johnson City School System for grades 5-8 is proof of that.
Nutter, who has been teaching for 11 years, felt like teaching was his calling well before he ever took his first step into college. He said that as a young boy he would pray that he would be an effective leader inside of the classroom.
“It feels good to know that I am doing what I am supposed to do and I am doing what God has called me to do,” Nutter said. “I can’t really put it into words of what this means to me.”
Normally Nutter isn’t lost for words as he teaches children about important issues that they will face outside of school.
“I just try to help the students overcome important topics like obesity, substance abuse and just little things like that,” Nutter said. “The topics that are more relevant to them…We are surrounded by what I teach everyday outside of the school and as a teacher, I want them to really invest — not just in the classroom — but outside of the classroom.”
That goes hand-in-hand with what Nutter says is the most rewarding part about being a teacher, as he enjoys getting e-mails from parents and students whocome back to see him and say that he influenced their lives.
“The words, ‘You’re an inspiration’, it means a lot to me,” Nutter said.
And being a related arts teacher, Nutter get to interact with a majority of the students that walk the halls of the intermediate school.
“Over the course of 11 years, that is a big chunk of our community,” Nutter said through a smile. “Every nine weeks I get a whole new group, that means I meet the students and I get to know the parents a little bit.”
His time as a coach in basketball, now cross country and softball, also exposed him to spending a good amount of time with students and their families.
“It’s more than just being the teacher of the year, it’s more than a title, once you’re a teacher and you feel like you’re doing great, it comes out in the community, when you get e-mails from people,”
“It means a lot more because I was nominated by teachers around me,” he said. “But at the same time, it sort of comes with the territory. You do your job and you do it well, it’s just part of it. It’s kind of like a Heisman Trophy. A Heisman Trophy winner can’t win the award without his offensive line. So to be nominated by my teachers, I consider them right there with me.”