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Carrie Lee Peyton Amazing Educator Scholarship

Funded by
Picture of the donor
Peyton Family
2 winners, $625 each
Application Deadline
May 19, 2022
Winners Announced
Jun 19, 2022
Education Level
High School, Graduate
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
High school junior or senior or graduate with student debt
Career Field:
Interested in studying education or a current teacher

Carrie Lee Peyton was passionate about education and what it meant for everyone. The empathy she exuded was relative and she always wanted the best for everyone, no matter what the situation.

Many would describe Carrie as a powerhouse who housed a love for education in her spirit. The mountains of illiteracy that she moved helped countless children recognize their own power, all while believing in their own worth. She had a pure heart and loved genuinely, and knew that love was the best defense against evil. Her wisdom allowed her to see what others did not see and for that, she left behind an incredible legacy for future educators and students. 

This scholarship aims to support a BIPOC student, and a teacher who has student debt who is committed to community advocacy.

The first award will go to a BIPOC high school junior or senior who is interested in studying education. The second will go to a BIPOC teacher who has student debt, is committed to community advocacy, and has a classroom that offers support to their students. 

To apply as a student, tell us about the challenges you have faced through your education and how you’ll help other students overcome these challenges through your career. To apply as a teacher, tell us how you’re advocating for social justice and how you incorporate this in your everyday classroom activities.

Selection Criteria:
Ambition, Need, Boldest Profile
Published March 11, 2022
Essay Topic

Student: What challenges did you face throughout your education and how will you help other students overcome through your career? 

Teacher: How are you advocating for social justice and how do you integrate that into your everyday classroom activities?

400–600 words

Winning Applications

Sheree Jones
University of GeorgiaEast Point, GA
I have dedicated my education to Educational Administration, most recently earning a Master of Arts in K-12 Educational Administration. Currently, I am a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Georgia. My research is focused on improving teacher retention, for teachers of color in elementary schools. Furthermore, I have embodied the essential leadership qualities and determination to excel in the educational field. In the course of my undergraduate studies, I was inspired to go beyond the school walls in order to help students overcome social barriers. I participated in two important mentoring groups; The Advantage and Break the Cycle. Both organizations were designed to help increase the college retention rate and help break negative cycles within inner-cities. In order to reach students in the classroom, it was vital to reach them outside of the classroom. Building relationships and trust is not a rapid process. Leaders must be patient, understanding, and have great communication skills when taking on these endeavors. During my postgraduate studies, I participated in a discussion group that addressed social inequality issues in K-12 classrooms. Our Winter 2013 focus question was centered on teacher-to-student racial gaps. The population of minority students is steadily increasing in today’s urban schools. Consequently, many minority students are not college ready after completing a K-12 program. Many factors contribute to this disparity, but there’s one leading factor, teacher-to-student racial gaps. I discovered that in addition to being well educated and capable of effectively teaching the curriculum, teachers must be prepared to confront race and racism personally, in society, and especially in our schools. With this research in hand, as I progressed in my own career and began teaching fourth grade, I strove to create a school climate hospitable to education. Instead of focusing on educational gaps, I centered my classroom on student learning and building trust. I started the school year off getting to know my students and their families on a personal and cultural level. In addition to this new climate, more than 50% of my students grew in math and reading. Creating a school climate friendly for education, is not expeditious, instead it takes a dedicated leader that is willing to go above and beyond. Excellence in leadership will lead schools into the twenty-first century. I am dedicated to helping evolve what that excellence looks like. Experiencing ten years inside and outside the classroom, I am more determined to continue advocating for social justice within/outside of the classroom. I declare in 1 year I will be a professor, focusing on multicultural issues in K-12 education. Also, I will continue to help students and teachers combat social barriers. In three years, I will be a member of the Board of Education taking programmatic strides to change the face of the American education system. Overall, I am prepared to continue helping students and teachers overcome social inequalities and challenges.
Brandon Borom
Russell County High SchoolSeale, AL
My divorced mother, who is a math teacher, and I decided to adopt our foster child 5 years ago. He, Marcus, had been our foster child since he was dropped off at our apartment at the age of six months. As he aged, though, we noticed an increasing level of improper conduct at home and in daycare/ Pre-K. After many appointments with doctors, one physician finally suggested getting Marcus tested for Autism. In March of 2020, Marcus was finally diagnosed with Level 2 Autism/ADHD/ODD/Speech, which explained so many of the issues he was having at school. This was also the same time that Covid-19 caused U.S. schools to convert to virtual learning. All of this could have caused me to digress in my school responsibilities and/or family responsibilities and/or community responsibilities, but I chose to progress in these areas. It has been a challenge to complete assignments and participate in virtual school due to Covid with a brother who can have a meltdown at any minute for apparently no reason. I am also the only male in his life on a daily basis, so I feel responsible for teaching him how to be a man. It has been extremely hard to maintain a high GPA and a positive attitude while dealing with my little brother. My mom had to stop teaching to homeschool Marcus while Covid was ravaging the country. This caused my financial status to change from comfortable to struggling. This change in financial status was one of the hardest changes to cope with, but we did it. I learned to budget my small allowance and wait for items I needed to go on sale. I swallowed my pride and rode the bus to school as a Senior in High School, knowing that just getting to school was important, rather than how I got to school. I now understand having to help raise younger siblings and siblings with "special powers", rather than special needs. I understand the impact I have on younger generations, which makes me want to become a teacher even more. There are so few black male teachers at the Middle and High School level that I know I can make a positive difference in many students' lives when I become a teacher. I also now understand living in a financially struggling household. I can help fellow college students overcome these obstacles. Once I graduate, I can help my students and their families overcome these obstacles too. If experience is the best teacher, then I can use my experiences with my 'special' brother and struggling mother to help others successfully get through school and life.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is May 19, 2022. Winners will be announced on Jun 19, 2022.

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