Four KISD Educators Earn Boy Scout Honor


HH kindergarten teacher honoredFour Killeen ISD educators were recently surprised to receive awards for their outstanding work teaching students and serving as positive role models.


Laura Dunnells KISD Transition Coordinator in Special Education and an award committee member joined representatives of the Boy Scouts of America in presenting the organization’s Elbert K. Fretwell Outstanding Educator Award.   


Each teacher received their award in surprise announcements during the school day.


The award winners include the following:


  • Shawnette Simmons, Harker Heights Elementary School kindergarten teacher.
  • Joshua Garrick, Venable Village Elementary School long term sub in the Behavior Management Unit.
  • Eric Reynolds, Ellison High School band director.
  • Rodney Cooper, Audie Murphy Middle School AVID teacher.


All four teachers received nominations for their efforts to teach the spirit of the Scout Oath and the Scout law to their class. 


The scout oath: “On my honor, I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country, to obey the Scout Law, to help other people at all times, and to keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.”

Audie Murphy teacher honored

The scout law: “A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.”


The nomination letter supporting Simmons says she is a diligent teacher known to serve her colleagues and her students when specific needs arise in or out of school.


Parents report that she builds students’ confidence and shares kindness even to challenging students. She is a regular at athletic events and birthday parties and gets lots of visits from former students.


Garrick received recognition based on two years as a long-term substitute teacher. He was at Cedar Valley Elementary during COVID restrictions, and this year serves at Venable Village in the Behavior Management Unit.

Long-term sub honored

He is known to attend after-school functions and is quick to provide insights into students’ behavior and performance.


According to the nomination letter, “teachers call on Joshua when certain students on campus have breakdowns as these children have developed a special relationship with him and he can relate with them and to communicate as a liaison between staff and student.”


While Reynolds is relatively new to his band director duties at Ellison High School, he has been a recognizable figure there for many years.


For 15 years, he has served as announcer at football and basketball games. He is also known to many as a local church youth pastor.


According to a nomination letter, “Mr. Reynolds is the definition of someone with a servant heart. He emulates the meaning of the scout oath and the twelve points of the scout law, having been a scout as a youth.”


Cooper is known at Audie Murphy Middle School for being “everyone’s teacher whether you are in his class or not,” his nomination letter states.


He is an encourager for students and staff members, providing, “an ear to listen, a shoulder to lean on, and a hug to get you through a difficult time.”


Cooper teaches valuable lessons outside the curriculum, such as how to dress for an interview, how to be more organized, and how to think critically to solve problems.