2021 Teachers of the Year
Primary: Laura Fischer
Secondary: Katie Estrada
Teaching is an art and a science. An effective teacher understands how to combine the art and science of teaching to translate the two into effective instructional practice. It is the balance of these two elements that make the difference between a good teacher and a great teacher. Simply put, what teachers do in the classroom matters.
According to Dr. John Hattie, a leader in education research and the pioneer of the impact of visible learning, what our teachers do to create an effective learning environment is one of the biggest influences on student learning. In fact, his latest research has pinpointed that it is HOW the teacher teaches rather than WHAT the teacher teaches which has the greatest variable on student achievement.
Each year, Westlake Academy awards two teachers with the distinction of Teacher of the Year, one from our Primary School (Kindergarten through Grade 5) and one from our Secondary School (Grade 6 - Grade 12). Nominations are accepted from parents, students and peers and are submitted to our Campus Leadership Team
for review. The Campus Leadership Team narrows down the field to four per category. Then, those eight teachers complete a questionnaire addressing many of the same topics on the nomination form, but from their perspective. The final winners are selected from a panel outside of the school made up of educators. They will go on to compete for the title of State Teacher of the Year.
Past Winners: Congratulations!
2020: Primary - Joy Martin; Secondary - Jennifer O'Dell
2019: Primary - Sarah Titus; Secondary - Misty Argo
2018: Primary - Amy Wessels; Secondary - Jeff Myers (first year we awarded two teachers with the award)
2017: Liz Nairon, MYP Mathematics
2016: Liz Nairon, MYP Mathematics
2015: Rhoda Hahn, MYP/DP Science
2014: Cat Calzini, PYP
2013: Aurora Morales, DP Spanish
2012: Craig Talley, DP Economics
2011: Rod Harding, PYP
2010: Terri Watson, MYP English
2009: April Harrell, DP English
2008: Simon Aisthorpe, DP Mathematics