Genelle Colvard honored
as Teacher of the Month

November 19, 1999
Santa Paula News
Good Morning Santa Paula! is noted for its honors to those who dedicate themselves to education, and the first Teacher of the Month honored by the Chamber of Commerce this GMSP! season is the matriarch of a teaching family, Genelle Colvard. Colvard is a native of the Santa Clara River Valley and began her long association with Santa Paula schools nearly 60 years ago as a kindergarten student at McKevett School, where she now teaches.Colvard also attended Buckhorn School, Bardsdale School and Fillmore High School. After graduating, she married Buddy Colvard and took a hiatus from her own studies to join the work force while he served in the armed forces and attended college. The couple has three children, Stephen, Mark and Nancy.In 1963, Colvard decided the time was right to return to school to study to become a teacher, starting at Ventura College before transferring to what is now California State University Northridge. In 1967 she began teaching at Glen City School and remained for two decades, teaching 2nd and 3rd grades.When the Santa Paula Elementary School District developed the magnet school concept, Colvard transferred to McKevett School where she had attended kindergarten. McKevett is an acclaimed Visual & Performing Arts magnet school and Colvard has been a staffer there for 12 years, teaching 2nd and 3rd grades.Principal Patti Fulbright notes that it’s been an “Honor to work with Genelle for the past five of her 32 years of teaching. . .when I think of her, the concept of a genteel lady comes to mind; she truly lives her life by the Golden Rule and personifies this creed for all with whom she associates.”Fulbright said “Devoted ” is perhaps the word that describes Colvard best: she shares a rare and precious relationship with her mother, Polly, and perhaps it is from Polly that she had inherited her devotion to others. Each day Polly makes lunch for her daughter so they can share special time with each other. Colvard is also devoted to her husband, children and seven grandchildren.
“Genelle is devoted to putting forth a great deal of thought, preparation and enthusiasm in regard to her teaching responsibilities. She is devoted to bringing her love of music, art and reading to her classroom; she is devoted to the students of McKevett through her tireless efforts and willingness to serve on the SST year after year. She is devoted to her profession as evidenced by the two years she has served on the Teacher Performance Review Committee,” said Fulbright. “Genelle’s unfailing devotion to others, paired with her warm sense of humor, make her a well-loved teacher and staff member.”Colvard was presented her award by Chamber President Jim McCoy. Colvard was also selected SPESD Teacher of the Month.“I’ve been with the district for 32 years,” she said after receiving her award. “Although at times it feels like forever, I could stay another 32 years. . .it’s fortunate that McKevett enhances academics with the arts.”Colvard added with a laugh, “I see my family snuck in to surprise me; we’re a very close family.”

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