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Christina Coccia, Halpern Educational Center

<p>Christina Coccia is uniquely qualified to teach at Hillside Family of Agencies' Halpern Educational Center. But we wanted to surprise her with a News 8 Golden Apple Award simply because she makes a young man very happy. </p>

Christina Coccia is uniquely qualified to teach at Hillside Family of Agencies' Halpern Educational Center. But we wanted to surprise her with a News 8 Golden Apple Award simply because she makes a young man very happy.

Pat Gerew is Principal at the Halpern Education Center: "Christina Coccia is a fabulous teacher. She's very creative. She's very hands on with the kids."

Christina Coccia will do anything to reach her students, like bring a therapy dog to class. She's certified in Special Education and Social Work. Gerew says it gives her special insight into how things going on at home impact a child's ability to learn at school. "It's important because each student is very different and their needs are very different. And Miss Coccia really knows how to tap into that and support the kids."

Clovis Meikle is one of those kids. "She calms people down and she makes like people happy and takes them for breaks and makes them ready for work again."

Clovis asked us to surprise Miss Coccia. I asked what he thinks she'll do when she sees us? "I think she's gonna freak out."

When Christina learned Clovis wrote to us and asked that we give her a Golden apple Award she said "Thank you Clovis, that's so wonderful. I think I'm gonna cry."

Why does Christina like working at the Halpern Educational Center? "Because it's a new and different challenging thing every day. And it's exciting and I get to teach outside the box every day and kind of act like a kid."

Christina Coccia is a News 8 Golden Apple Award winner. Look below to read Clovis' letter.

Dear News 8,

Ms. Coccia is a good teacher because she helps all the kids. She helps solve our classes problems. Ms. Coccia is good at teaching Math and all the other subjects.

Sincerely,

Clovis Meikle, 11 years old

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