Rhodes' Michael Mayfield earns 2011 ExCEL award

Rhodes' Michael Mayfield earns 2011 ExCEL award

Rhodes earns 2011 ExCEL award

He may be relatively late to the field of education, but there's certainly nothing lagging in his enthusiasm for the profession or his students.

"I became a teacher at the age of 43 after doing many other things," said Michael Mayfield. And now "there is nothing I would rather do."

This attitude is among the reasons the Rhodes MS 8th-grade math and social studies teacher was selected SAISD's 2011 ExCEL award recipient. He was presented the honor by sponsors KENS5 and the San Antonio Federal Credit Union last week at a school assembly in his honor.

In addition to a golden apple trophy, he received a $1,000 cash prize and was featured in a KENS5 story.

"Mr. Mayfield is the teacher with a big heart," said principal Edward Garcia.

"It was no surprise that he was selected for this award. He will do whatever he can to help the school excel.

"In addition to teaching, Mayfield mentors new teachers and serves as his school's social studies department chair, a position he also previously held for math for a combined total of 11 years.

The six-year Rhodes veteran - who began his education career in 1998 at the former Cooper MS - said that one of the things he enjoys most about teaching social studies is the opportunity to help students understand the world.

"I can see every day that I try to make a difference in the students' lives. I have the honor of molding them into people who will make our country a better place in the future."