Sunnyslope Silver Apple presented to Mrs. Shawcroft

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By Alicia Barron By Alicia Barron

PHOENIX, Ariz. – Our latest Silver Apple award recipient is Sunnyslope High School’s Melanie Shawcroft.

She will tell you she never thought about being a teacher until college professors inspired her and thank goodness they did!  She now inspires her journalism students and is changing lives every day.

Mrs. Shawcroft says, “I think they influenced me enough to want to be in the classroom and do exactly what they were doing, which was changing lives.”

Melanie started teaching English at Sunnyslope in Phoenix seven years ago. 

Administrators approached her about an opening in journalism and steering students who put out the school newspaper “Viking Pages”.

She agreed to be the paper’s faculty adviser and never looked back.

Today she sees her colleagues and students as more of a family. “I love the community that Sunnyslope is and I love the students. We have a great diverse population that makes it fun to come to work every day.”

While the Silver Apple award goes to eight outstanding Arizona teachers each year, we always salute the student who nominates those teachers.

It’s not everyone who goes to the effort to write a letter of appreciation to those who’ve made a big difference in our lives. In this case, it was Jasmine Fuller, who, as it turns out, is an overachiever in her own right. 

Jasmine entered Mrs. Shawcroft’s journalism class mid-term and felt intimidated. She says in her nomination letter, “I was confused, I was nervous, I was overwhelmed but Mrs. Shawcroft would have none of this. Her advice and encouragement, not to mention her witty humor, have been invaluable. Thanks to Mrs. Shawcroft, I now know the value of an ambitious attitude.”