Freedom Elementary principal receives distinguished award

Published: May. 17, 2022 at 4:01 PM CDT|Updated: May. 17, 2022 at 4:18 PM CDT
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FORT SILL, Okla. (KSWO) - Students at Freedom Elementary had the chance to surprise their principal on Tuesday, May 17, after it was announced she would receive the 2022 Saint Barbara Award.

Fort Sill leadership presented the award to Principal Mikel Shanklin, in a surprise ceremony, honoring her for all the hard work she’s done with the children from Fort Sill.

There was singing, dancing, and even a little story-telling about the principal, as students joined together with staff and leadership from Fort Sill to thank Shanklin.

She is in her final year at Freedom, after over 29 years of bettering the lives and education of military children in the area.

“Very happy and very pleased to know that Fort Sill thinks I have done a great job, working with these children,” Shanklin said. “I’m going to miss working with these children. I think that is why I stayed so long, because I couldn’t walk away from the life these children lead and I have wanted to be a part of it all this time. This means a lot.”

The Saint Barbara Award is given to those who have demonstrated integrity and professionalism, while serving Fort Sill and the surrounding community with selflessness.

It is usually only handed out to military personnel, but based on the stories told at Freedom Elementary, Principal Shanklin is the perfect recipient.

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