LINCOLN, R.I. (WJAR) -- This week's Golden Apple Award goes to Patricia Kilsey, a beloved special education teacher at Lincoln High School.
Kilsey was nominated by Barbara Samra, a friend.
Samra wrote that Kilsey is devoted to students with special needs, some with overwhelming challenges.
But Kilsey has also helped them learn and get jobs. She's never boastful about her accomplishments.
Victories in her classroom aren't measured in A's and B's, but in reaching what might have been thought to be unattainable milestones, like learning to cook.
Kilsey's life-skills recipe could someday mean survival when students move out of their parents' homes and into independent living.
Her grandchildren, children, husband, educators, political leaders and friends, joined NBC 10’s parade to surprise Kilsey in her classroom.
"No one's more deserving, mom,” Kilsey’s son said as she was accepting the award.
Kilsey is humbled and said she has enjoyed every minute of it all.
"This has been my passion, my family, my school family -- the most important thing -- my faith and my family,” she said.