Tennessee School for the Blind announced the Students of the Year for the 2018-19 school year. The2019 Students of the Year Photos students were chosen in one of three categories: Life Skills, K-8th grade, and High School. The winners are:

Gunner Lincoln – for Life Skills

Anyone who is around four-year-old Gunner very long knows he loves puppies, his family, and tools. His signature scarf around his neck has paw prints that he loves to wear. Gunner is in his first year at TSB and has a passion for learning. He is inquisitive, friendly, and very curious. He is an excellent student and has perfect attendance this year. Gunnerhas gained a good command of reading and writing the Braille alphabet, understanding time, and money. He loves to audible books and

 braille on his own. On the playground, he loves the Harmony Park and the merry-go-round. Gunner is polite and loves meeting new people.

Donne Sands – Grades K-8

Kind-hearted, loyal, caring, reliable, understanding... These are all words that describe Donnie Sands, K-8 Student of the Year. Donnie is a hardworking student who is currently in 8th grade. He resides in the cottages during the week and after school enjoys hanging out with friends, listening to music, and participating on the wrestling team. With a variety of aspirations for life, Donnie knows much hard work is required to achieve his goals. When not at TSB, Donnie enjoys hiking with his mother in their hometown of Alcoa, TN. He also enjoys attending church, eating pizza, and fishing. Donnie spoke very highly of his mother. He spoke of how grateful he is for her and stated, “I would love to just thank her for helping me become a good person.” During a recent conversation, Donnie was asked about “bucket list” items. Donnie said things he would include would be: visiting England, bungee jumping, and catching a dangerous fish. Referring to his favorite subjects at TSB, he spoke of PE and History… History because “it’s interesting,” and PE because “it keeps me active.” He added how he enjoyed the variety PE brought to his day at school. Donnie believes qualities making up a “good student” included “someone who takes full responsibility, for their actions.” He also believes a good student will pay attention in class, following directions, and completing assignments. When speaking of good qualities found in leadership, Donnie replied, “Someone who truly cares about people.” If that is a quality of a leader, Donnie Sands is a true leader. The word caring comes to the minds of many when describing our K-8 student of the year.

Ella Brown – High School

TSB’s High School Student of the Year hails from Fayetteville, Lincoln County, Tennessee. Ella has made her mark at TSB over the past three years. The junior class honor roll student stays busy after classes involved in several extracurricular activities. She has demonstrated her character and skills in track, goalball, cheer, swimming, golf, and forensics. Inspired by her middle school special education teacher, Ella hopes to pursue a career as a teacher of the visually impaired. Her plans include attending Middle Tennessee State University and Florida State University to earn a degree in Special Education with an emphasis on visual impairment. Ella is the daughter of Todd and Sara Brown and older sister to Mia and Sophie Brown.