Tuscaloosa City Schools, along with Townsquare Media Tuscaloosa, Legal Services of Alabama and Child Abuse Prevention Services, will highlight and recognize Rising Star Character Students of the Month from each school in the district during the 2022-2023 school year. Every month, two to three outstanding TCS students will be highlighted in this series.

Tuscaloosa City School staff and two proud women gathered at Woodland Forrest Elementary School to honor second grader DeAria Crumpton, who was named a Rising Star Character Student of the Month in her classroom Friday morning.

Woodland Forrest is already filled with exceptional students -- the elementary school has a STEM-centric curriculum and a sharp focus on leadership development in their more than 500 students.

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Still, DeAria Crumpton stood out and was selected by principal Brian Rose to receive this special recognition.

"We chose DeAria for this award because over and over again, we hear how much you care about everybody, that you help people in this classroom, you're at home helping mom, and you are a great student, a great collaborator and a great colleague," Rose said during the presentation. "You make Woodland Forrest a better place, but even when you walk out the door, I think you're trying to make the world a better place. At such a young age, to already know that, it makes us really really proud, and when I got to call your mom and say that about you, I had tears in my eyes."

Crumpton, a brave and bright second grader, credited the influence of her mother, grandmother and teacher for her good behavior, all of whom looked on as DeAria was given a certificate, medal and gift bag for this honor.

(Stephen Dethrage | Tuscaloosa Thread)
(Stephen Dethrage | Tuscaloosa Thread)

"I feel good and happy," Crumpton said after the ceremony. "I try to be good to my friends and be a good leader in my class by doing what I'm supposed to and listening to the teacher."

Crumpton said she spends most of her time outside of the classroom at play. She said she likes going outside and playing whatever sports or games she can.


"I play with my friends, and when people don't have anybody to play with, I let them play with me," she said.

Stay connected to the Tuscaloosa Thread for one more feature this month on another student leader and when the Rising Star Character Student of the Month series continues in April.

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