‘It’s something I could do forever’

Originally published Jan. 19, 2018 in the Exponent Telegram.

By Victoria L. Cann

LOST CREEK — South Harrison High School has been represented well by Felicia Pancoast, who has received the honor of being named the 2017 Health Educator of the Year by the West Virginia Association of Health and Physical Education, Recreation and Dance.

The educator is identified as having best made significant contributions to the profession in the areas of teaching, research and services.

Pancoast has spent her entire 12-year career at South Harrison High School, where she teaches both health and physical education.

“What I enjoy about teaching is first of all that it keeps me young,” she said. “I stay with a bunch of kids, and I know high school was some of the best times I ever had. I like telling them the things I’ve done and mistakes I’ve made so they can learn.”

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Lake Villa P.E. teacher focuses on positivity

Originally published Jan. 8, 2018 in the Daily Herald

By Lee Filas

Donna Coia admits to being a bit hyperactive.

However, the physical education teacher at Thompson Elementary School in Lake Villa says this allows her to bring excitement to every student who walks into the gymnasium.

“Everybody in the whole school; I get to help guide all students,” she said. “So, that’s why having the opportunity to be a P.E. teacher means so much to me. I can touch all of these lives.”

One way she spreads her message is with a “positivity cart” she rolls around and parks near one of the gym entrances. The cart carries little wooden plaques bearing positive messages such as “Believe you can and you are halfway there,” “Don’t forget to be awesome,” and “Make it happen.”

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