Deanna Cureton

Deanna Cureton, a teacher at Charlotte Early Engineering College (CEEC), was named Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools 2017 Teacher of the Year, and Steven Randolph of Allenbrook Elementary was named Teacher Assistant of the Year.

The awards were announced Wednesday at a ceremony at East Mecklenburg High.

Cureton teaches English Honors II and serves as the 10th-grade team leader. She joined CEEC last year teaching freshmen.

A native of Dayton, Ohio, Cureton earned her bachelor’s degree from Winston-Salem State University and a master’s degree from North Carolina A&T University.

She began her teaching career at Glenn High in Forsyth County, and in 2004 she moved to North Mecklenburg High.

Steven Randolph

In a statement released by CMS, Cureton says that teaching at CEEC has been a learning experience.

“After 16 years of teaching, it’s completely changed the type of teacher that I am,” she said. “My lessons are focused on collaboration and project-based learning. It’s made me a better teacher. My students have benefited from having a voice and a say and a choice. They’re very involved in the learning process.”

Randolph grew up as one of six children and was the first in his family to graduate from high school. As a second grader in the town of Randolph, N.C., he struggled academically. His grades improved, he said, because of encouragement from his mother and teacher.

“I worked really hard on improving my grades,” he said in a statement. “I got mostly As and set a third-grade record. It was a big change for me and I received a lot of recognition. Once I turned it around, I never turned back.”

Randolph earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UNC Wilmington.