Sheftall to retire after 23 years

Thomasville Times-Enterprise, Staff Report
At the close of the school year, beloved science teacher of 23 years, Carol Sheftall, will retire
from Brookwood School.
THOMASVILLE -- At the close of the school year, beloved science teacher of 23 years, Carol Sheftall, will retire from Brookwood School.

“Carol has been a cornerstone of Brookwood since her arrival in 1997,” said David Grooms, Brookwood’s Upper School Director. “She taught AP Biology for all those years and her students have consistently excelled against both national and state standards. She has served as an AP reader for many years and is one of the top biology teachers. She has many students go on to college and pursue majors and careers in science-related fields. Many students attribute their love of science to her passion and enthusiasm. The retirement of Mrs. Sheftall leaves a huge hole that the school will try to fill. I am happy for Mrs. Sheftall as she pursues retirement and spends more time with her children and grandchildren. She will certainly be missed.”

A graduate of Thomas County Central High School, known then simply as Central High School, she then attended the University of Georgia for her bachelor’s in zoology. She earned a master’s in biology education from Jacksonville State University.

Sheftall has been a teacher for nearly 50 years. She began her career in education at Waynesville Junior High School in Missouri teaching eighth grade earth science. She went on to work in schools throughout the states of Georgia and Florida.

She joined the Brookwood School science department in 1997. She has since served as Science Department Chair and has taught biology, AP Biology, marine science, and environmental science.

Headmaster Dr. Randy Watts lauded, "Mrs. Carol Sheftall is a master teacher in every sense. She has dedicated her professional life to education and has made an impression on the lives of thousands of students, parents, and peer educators over the course of her career. Mrs. Sheftall has many qualities that I find remarkable: her life-long curiosity about science, her passion for teaching, her unwavering support for her students, and her dedication to her colleagues. She had the perfect combination of experience, skill, and interest as a teacher that remained steadfast throughout her career. I admire her, have grown through working with her, and will miss her dearly."

A testament to her dedication to her students lies in the awards given to her by them over the years. She was a recipient of the STAR Teacher award five times, an honor given to an educator by the STAR student of that year. Additionally, the 2009-2010 yearbook was dedicated to her, a Brookwood tradition since 1971 decided upon by the senior class.

“Mrs. Sheftall is easily the reason why I'm intending to major in biology,” stated senior Lilly Jackson. “The way she teaches makes learning part of her sharing her passion and love for science. It never felt like work. She's the reason I thought of starting a science book club because she was always lending and suggesting books to us to help us continue passion for science outside of the classroom. I'm going to miss her so much. Brookwood won't be the same without her.”

“Working at Brookwood was a pleasure for 23 years,” said Sheftall. “The Brookwood family was supportive and encouraging. I will miss the ball games--football under the lights, grading papers as I watched a basketball game, enjoying the breeze at a baseball game. I will miss the musicals, and the students performances I would never have predicted. I will miss the labs using the Vernier equipment with computers and seeing students try a lab, then rerunning it several more times either to improve the technique or to increase the data. I will miss the summer reading chats at the coffee shop with future AP Biology students. In addition to being able to continue learning, I met delightful students, supportive parents, and wonderful colleagues who continued to teach me things I didn't know. ”

Sheftall has two children, Mary Beth and Will ‘03, a Brookwood graduate. In retirement, she plans to help with the schooling of her grandchildren, hike and bike the New River Trail in southwest Virginia, and quilting the Dutch doll quilt she started 43 years ago.
Located in Thomasville, GA, Brookwood School is a private school for grades JK-12. Students benefit from a challenging academic program, fine and performing arts, competitive athletics, and a wide selection of extracurricular activities.