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First grade teacher Tamika Tatum proudly rocks a totally extra, ginormous belt that honors her as Fresno Teachers Association’s Educator Champion of the Week.

Tamika Tatum is “stylin’ and profilin.’”

The FTA member is the first to receive the award. FTA says Tatum “won for being a positive force not only for the students in her class, but for all students on campus” at Thomas Elementary. Tatum is also part of a group of teachers who are starting the first Black Student Union club at a Fresno Unified elementary school.

Since it’s a weekly award, the belt is on the move. FTA is looking for educators who are both “stylin’ & profilin’” and inspire students and colleagues with their hard work and dedication. Nominations can be made online at, where nominators may check boxes that detail what strengths the educator embodies.

Strengths include:

  • Student centered: Emphasis is placed on learning over teaching.
  • Work oriented: Work is valued, purposeful, and relevant to students.
  • Student relations: Students view other students as supportive and interested in their well-being.
  • Results oriented: Students understand strength-based thinking increases capacity and resilience to achieve goals.
  • Schoolwide relations: All school stakeholders are responsible for the education of each student.
  • School-family relations: Parents as a strong partner in the teaching and learning process are encouraged to be involved in their child’s education.
  • Future oriented: Students have a dramatic, positive image of the future.

Winners not only get the belt for a week, they receive two pizzas from Round Table Pizza. Check out FTA’s video promoting the award on Twitter (@fresnota), Facebook and Instagram.

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