SAN ANTONIO – One San Antonio area teacher is credited not only with teaching kids how to compete through debate, but also with helping students who may be hesitant to speak in front of groups to be confident, allowing them to shine.
Leslie Crady is the Speech and Debate director at Brandeis High School and KSAT12 got to surprise her with the Educator of the Month Award last week.
“This is the reason why I do what I do,” Crady said as she pointed to her class. “You’ve got some really big brains here.”
For Crady, it’s all about the students. But last week, it was all about “her” as she was surprised her with the Educator of the Month Award.
Crady’s former student Ashley Jansky, a graduate of Brandeis High School, nominated her for the award.
Ashley said she credits Crady for giving her the confidence to not only speak in front of people, but also to compete in Speech and Debate.
“When I first started speech in tenth grade, I was like, struggling,” Jansky said. “She was helping me and she gave me the confidence. She never gave up on me.”
Crady has been teaching for 15 years with the last five at Brandeis.
“It’s not about getting kids to like that Ivy League school, although that’s great, but it’s about getting kids to be like just a little bit more comfortable from where they were when they first entered class,” Crady said.
This year, Crady’s son Garrett, a sophomore, is also a student in her class.
He says that his mom is deserving of the award.
“I’m very proud, because my mom has done a lot for the community,” Garrett Crady said. “Especially for me, Ashley, and a lot of other debaters that we have. Taking them to tournaments and just being an all-around good teacher and a good mom to me. But also to most of the students.”
Crady is a graduate of another Northside ISD school, Taft High School, where she says she picked up her love for speech and debate.
She credits her coach for getting her interested in the subject.