Two Allatoona Special Ed Teachers Recognized with Spotlight Award


Special Education teachers around the District work with students with many different needs and disabilities. These teachers are a unique blend of educator, mentor, and friend. They work hard every day to help their special needs students succeed in and out of the classroom. 

Two such teachers were recently recognized by representatives from Cobb Schools' Special Education Department: Director George Morgan and Assistant Director Lisa Briley. Mr. Morgan and Ms. Briley showed up at Allatoona High School early to surprise Ashley Dinkel and Jacob Longacre for their tireless dedication and the impact that they are having on their students.

"We wanted to show up for these teachers because they show up for their students day after day," said Mr. Morgan. "This can be a challenging job, but these two are doing wonderful work and doing it in exciting and unique ways."

One of those unique ways is through making dog treats. Ms. Dinkel's students are using their skills to not only make tasty treats that local dogs love but marketing and selling them to the community utilizing social media. This school-based enterprise is just one way Ms. Dinkel makes learning fun and practical for her class. She also helps prepare her students for life after high school with job preparation skills and social skills, developing specific job-related competencies, and fostering independence. 


After presenting Ms. Dinkel with her gift bag and Spotlight Award, the Special Education Surprise Squad headed to their next destination just down the hall, where Mr. Longacre was teaching a class. In only his second year at Allatoona, Mr. Longacre is having a big effect on the school, during class and after. He was recognized for making an impact as both a teacher and a coach.

As an Interrelated Teacher, Mr. Longacre works to support students with disabilities in the general curriculum, and as the Buc wrestling coach, he recently helped Brooke French become Allatoona's first-ever girls GHSA state champ. He also assists his fellow teachers, as he was on this day, by filling in as a substitute when needed.


Ashley Dinkel and Jacob Longacre are two examples of why Cobb is the best place to Teach, Lead, and Learn. Congratulations to both of these exceptional teachers for being recognized for their selfless work and for making sure that everyone is achieving student success.