March 2021BOE/Bus Depot/Millikin - Sondra Clarke
I would like to nominate and recognize Sondra Clarke for the Tiger Team Member of the Month because of the hard work she continues to display each day. During the month of March, she compiled a very informative newsletter from the Finance Department, happily supported staff through the requisition cut-off process and made changes and updates as necessary, and much more. I believe she is a perfect example that aligns with the three core values of this year’s A.C.E. theme!
Boulevard - Betsy Race
Betsy has really built up our school spirit for our students and staff...no one is left behind! She had students paint inspirational messages on our walls, created bulletin boards in our main hallway to promote school spirit, sends uplifting emails each day to all staff, organized superhero awards for students each week, and begins our school day with announcements of welcome, peace, encouragement, and friendship. Her love and care for our students and staff is evident in all she does!
Canterbury - Erica Wigton
Erica has been a constantly encouraging and hands-on presence in our building and in our classrooms throughout this unusual school year. From ensuring the cleanliness of our rooms to popping in to check how we're doing, to offering mundane yet valuable assets as microphones and student headphones, she has been doing what she can to make teaching and learning easier and more effective for us all.
Delisle - John Shoup
Mr. Shoup always arrives at work, after more than an hour drive from Canton, with a smile and a positive energy that he shares with his students without fail. He is able to make difficult science content manageable for students who have struggled before arriving at Options. Kid focused is a great descriptor for Mr. Shoup.
Fairfax - Tamar Gray
Tamar has made a positive and permanent impact on countless children through her years in the District. She has brought the beauty and joy of music to each one of their lives; she is irreplaceable!
Gearity - Keith Walker
Keith continues to present extraordinary leadership skills on a daily basis. Keith always takes the time to listen and explain work related issues with his employees. He is caring and always devoted to his job. Keith is a prime example of one who performs exemplary skills needed to represent the Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District.
Heights High - Patrick Fisher
Fisher is an exemplar teacher. Whenever you talk with his students they are quick to tell you they love Fisher's class and you can clearly see they are engaged in the learning. Fisher is also a leader in the building and hosts fun activities for the staff members to participate in to increase the building culture for all.
Monticello - Deborah Richardson
Mrs. Richardson always goes above and beyond for students and staff. I feel a lot safer when she is working. She is by the book at all times, which creates a level of safety/consistency for staff and students.
Noble - Jennifer Futchi
Jenny helps keep our team going. She is always on top of things for what our next steps are. We affectionately call her Big Boss because she takes on being our go-to when we are in need or want. Jenny's passion for seeing her scholars grow is in every move she makes. From exchanging ideas about activities, contributing to tasks and making assessments, and doing what is right for all our kids. Jenny is a leader in our building and a valued member of our team!
Oxford - Sabrina Ollie
As a lunchroom supervisor, Sabrina fills in wherever needed and is a great team leader. She is even furthering her education through the District’s Grow Your Own grant partnership with CSU. I am proud to call her a colleague at Oxford!
Rox El - Prevella Padgett
Ms. Padgett has been here working every day ever since the pandemic started. She is so nice and reliable and she always has something nice to say to everyone. We are so lucky to have Prevella at Roxboro Elementary School!
Rox Mid - Karlin Warren
Mr. Warren has been a true team player for our RMS Learning Community. He has created videos to assist in a safe return for our staff and students to the building. He has assisted in making phone calls to parents whose students were struggling academically. He has also made wake up calls to students who needed additional assistance making it to classes on time. Most recently Mr. Warren has taken on the responsibility of point person for technology devices at our school. I would be remiss if I didn't mention that he is also presently pursuing his masters degree to become a school counselor. RMS is lucky to have Mr. Warren as one of our staff members!
BOE/Bus Depot/Millikin - Erick Brazile
Erick goes above and beyond what's asked of him, every day!
Boulevard - Michele Dawson
I believe Michele should be Tiger Team Member of the Month because she is one of the hardest working people I know. Michele has to teach two grade levels and create lessons and activities for both levels. She differentiates for EACH student which makes a powerful impact on each student. She is always willing to help out her team and she continues to be a leader in the process.
Canterbury - Debbie Finizia
Our school psychologist is the driver of special education evaluations and keeps us on track to complete our respective portions of the ETRs. Debbie has a good rapport with families and staff, making for successful meetings.
Delisle - Denise Thompson
Denise is one of the founding members of the Options Program and continues to serve as a driving force for our students’ success. Denise has the unique ability to create an educational space that allows students to tap into their full potential.
Denise is a consummate professional that possesses a quiet strength often displayed through her wisdom, diligence, patience and humility. Keeping to this notion, she is undoubtedly an excellent role model for all of our students!
Fairfax - Cornelia Meier
She is an amazing teacher and goes above and beyond everyday. Right now she has five extra groups she meets with just to help out. Fairfax wouldn't be the same without her.
Gearity - Lizzie Henry
Lizzie is a long term sub filling in to support our Early Childhood Program. She has been so helpful to the early childhood team and continues to go above and beyond to make sure our staff and students are prepared for instruction. She is always friendly and steps in to lend a hand. We are so appreciative of her knowledge and organizational skills!
Heights High - Ann Kocks
Ann works tirelessly with our children in breakout rooms, one on one. Ann is incredibly kind and patient with our students as she assists them. She works hard to build relationships and to support students, Mr. Warner and myself in the classroom. I am so thankful to have her working with our biology classes this year.
Monticello - Daisy Tims
Ms. Tims is a wonderful educator deeply committed to her students and her colleagues at Monticello. Throughout the District's transition to virtual learning Ms. Tims has collaborated with her content and grade level colleagues to provide high quality learning experiences for her students. Her depth of content knowledge and instructional practice is unsurpassed and she is always eager to share her insight and experience with her fellow staff members. In short, Ms. Tims is a deeply committed and generous educator who represents the best of CH-UH. Monticello is honored to have her as a member of our staff and family.
Noble - Freddie Crawford
Freddie has taken over as Head Custodian for the past month. He has done a fantastic job in getting the building ready for staff's return. The building is clean and looks great! He is very helpful when anyone needs anything!
Oxford - Amnea Abu-Saleh
Amnea is one of the most loving and caring media ancillaries I have ever come across! She absolutely loves kids and it shows! Amnea is a big part of every single student's life here at Oxford and she treats each student like a VIP. The students are so happy to be back at school and a big part of that is the warm welcome each and every day by Amnea Abu-Saleh as they enter through the front door. She also juggles tons of odd jobs around the building and does so with a great attitude. Amnea is a true team player and willing to help anybody out.
Rox El - Julie Egre
Julie has remained flexible and friendly through many transitions in the last two months. We appreciate her positive attitude and the exceptional support she gives to our students. When the district began hybrid learning, Julie changed placements and did it with such professionalism. Julie splits her time between Canterbury and Roxboro Elementary and is so effective at managing her commitments at both schools. Our students are blessed to have her in their corner!
Rox Mid - Ashley Fertig
Ashley Fertig is the consummate professional. CH-UH is lucky to have her. Not only did she finish her 10th year of teaching last year, but on top of that, she helped coordinate the “We Miss You” parade for Rox Mid families. It was a huge success. She has hosted personal Hangouts for her students to help them better understand the math content. Ashley makes Math lessons fun! She helps students understand math using relevant approaches. Ashley always puts others first. She deserves to win this month more than anyone!
BOE/Bus Depot/Millikin - Carolyn Jackson
Carolyn is the backbone of the transportation department. She is here everyday at 5:30 am making sure everything is covered and that all the students are getting where they need to go. She handles any request or job she is given in a timely and efficient manner and prides herself on making sure it is done correctly the first time. I couldn't do it without her.
Boulevard -Raechal Triscaro
Rachael is a 2nd grade teacher who has great rapport with her students and parents. She is resourceful, creative, positive, and skilled with online learning. She truly makes learning fun and is a real team player!
Canterbury - Angela Prince-Mahoney
ELA Lead Mrs. Mahoney takes numerous groups during the day for interventions. She is helping train a new staff member and attends many data meetings with the principal. She builds strong relationships with students and their families.
Delisle - Ed Stair
Ed is a great role model for students.
Fairfax - Dana Bogus
Even in a virtual environment, Dana's talent in creating confident readers year after year is stronger than ever. She is kind, reflective, and supportive of her colleagues. She has helped build strong relationships with her students' families and makes sure they have all they need to learn. I am thankful to call her a teammate and friend!
Gearity - Kelly Cooper
Ms. Cooper has been willing to go above and beyond for our students during our remote learning time. She regularly comes to the building to teach and will pick up supplies to drop off at student's homes. She will also create student incentives that are delivered to their house. Recently, when a colleague was ill, she stepped in to support their students testing in person so the families would not have to adjust their schedules. Ms. Cooper created a visual schedule model to help students navigate getting to their Google Meets and the model has been adopted by other teachers to support their students. She is a very positive person who loves yoga and has offered to create a lunch bunch group in which she can teach yoga, because she is a licensed instructor.
Heights High - Melissa Strouth
Melissa is the best person I know at forming relationships with students in the classroom. She makes all of her students feel seen, thought about and cared for. She checks in on both their mental but also emotional health often and is there when students need her. She is caring and understanding and gives students the grace they need and deserve while also holding them to rigorous academic standards. Because of her relationships, students always rise to her expectations. She is an inspiration.
On top of to teaching 2 new preps this year (including an AP) Melissa is a tech coach at the high school. She is lighting fast at answers my questions (and EVERYONE else's questions). Melissa is also a problem solver. If she doesn't know the answer she researches it for you or finds you a work around!
....did I forget to mention she has 4 kids in the district and is currently getting her PhD? When does she have time for everything? She is an exemplar teacher.
Monticello - Leslie Garrett
Leslie is always ready and willing to help her colleagues. Whether it is helping prepare for an IB visit, covering classes for sick teachers, assisting with MAP testing, or staying after-class and being an emotional support to students, you ask, she is there!
Ms. Garrett accomplishes these efforts while balancing responsibilities in multiple schools. She is an awesome member of our team.
Noble - Wendy Burkey
Since last March, Wendy has done more home visits than I can count. She is always willing to run to IT and over to a family's home to drop off any tech related equipment needed. She has partnered with different district and local organizations to provide Hotspots and food to Noble families. When the district had summer produce pick-ups, Wendy coordinated with Nancy Peppler to have Noble be a satellite pick-up site and came in to facilitate the process each Thursday. In addition to all of this work, Wendy has also been pivotal during Supply Pick-Ups at the building level. She continues to support staff, scholars, and families during this time any way that she can. Noble counts its blessings to have Wendy Burkey always at the ready to help!
Oxford - Rebecca McCalligan
She goes out of her way to help her students. She regularly makes home visits to make sure her students and their families have what they need to help them learn. She has made her online classroom inviting for students so they want to come on a daily basis. Students remain engaged in challenging learning activities throughout the day. She is a partner with her families. She makes sure that they are informed and supported especially during this difficult time.
Rox El - Sarah Coyne
Sarah is always available to help students, families or teachers when they are in need. She calls families, visits the homes to deliver supplies, creates plans for students that are struggling and does classroom lessons weekly. I am not sure how she fits it all in! The success we are experiencing in the classroom is in part due to her diligence in connecting with families.
Rox Mid - Evon Gaston
Ms. Gaston goes above and beyond to ensure that are students are on track with assignments. Ms. Gaston is very engaged and extremely helpful. Ms. Gaston is very caring with students, is creative when problem solving and takes a leadership role when needed. She is a great asset in our classroom.
BOE/Bus Depot/Millikin - Karen Heinsbergen
Karen is rich not only with core values - Adaptability, Collaboration, and Equity - she is the source of wisdom, kind, respectful and helpful. She has enlightened the path of education working collaboratively with all, adopting the challenges and situation equally in all areas.
Boulevard - Octavia Houston-Cash
We are required to work and see children in-person. Octavia has been working 1:1 with a student who requires extra attention. She has spent extra hours making picture boards and picture cards to help him adjust to a classroom setting. She also works with the other children in the classroom as much as possible. Throughout this difficult time, Octavia has maintained a positive attitude and is always there to lend a hand. She continues to be a guiding force in my classroom and there is no better paraprofessional working in the district today. She is kind, considerate, compassionate, dependable, and creative. The children love her and look forward to seeing her every day. I am so grateful to consider her my colleague and to have her in my classroom.
Canterbury - Kate Duhanich
Mrs. Duhanich is an awesome communicator. She worked well with Mrs. Davis to communicate about important updates to staff. She also communicates weekly TBT notes to her first grade team to help them prepare data for upcoming meetings.
Delisle - David Nobles
David is a constant in these changing Covid-19 times. He continuously helps his students while simultaneously pushing them out of their educational comfort zone. David is an integral part of the Options staff and a truly compassionate man.
Fairfax - Chanel Owens
Chanel has worked closely with Mr. Heffern for several years and he wouldn't have it any other way. She loves the students and it shows.
Gearity - Tamara Bishko
Tammy has been very helpful since the beginning of this current school year. With learning being different for students and teachers, Tammy has step in to make sure the teachers that she lead has everything that they need, whether it's a guidance on instructional or just a listening ear. I don't know what Gearity would do without Tammy!
Heights High - Anna Kiss
Anna has worked tirelessly to support her students, fellow colleagues, and the Career Tech Programs. From making masks for students and teachers to donating her furniture to help students have better places to complete their school work, she has been an inspiration to me. I highly recommend her for Tiger Team Member of the Month.
Monticello - Joni Ribic
Joni is an asset to the Monticello team. She is organized, professional, and collaborative. She is the ultimate team player, always willing to lend a hand even for students who are not on her caseload currently. Joni has an excellent rapport with her students. Her class is highly engaged, even in the virtual environment, and their respect for their teacher is evident. Joni has balanced the unique demands of the remote instruction with grace. She is a role model to those around her.
Noble - Briana Bozeman
Briana joined the Noble Family last year and has been there for everyone ever since. She stepped up this fall when needed and has been helping Noble operate as smoothly as possible. She supports our staff whenever needed and jumps at the chance to be a part of new initiatives at improving attendance. We are so lucky to have her here at Noble!!!
Oxford - Lena McCoy
Nurse Lena goes out of her way to be caring and sympathetic with all of her students, and she is majorly concerned with the physical, mental, and emotional needs of her students. Nurse Lena has excellent listening skills and communication skills and connects multiple times per week with her students' teachers to inquire on how her students are doing. She starts each day with a smile and has an excellent sense of humor. She is patient with all of her students and collaborates with the IEP team.
Rox El - Robyn Greenberg
Robyn goes above and beyond for her students. She creates engaging lessons and has established positive relationships with all of her families. She has visited each of her students' homes to drop off materials and even a holiday gift. It is fun to visit her classroom and see her students learning.
Rox Mid - Lia Radke
Lia always puts students first! In every conversation, she challenges adults to consider the perspective of our students. Lia is a team-player and willing to jump right in to find solutions to problems, work after-hours to prepare lessons for all our students, and is a great listener to her colleagues. Her sense of humor is another trait I love about her and she is fun to work with on projects!
BOE/Bus Depot/Millikin - LaShae Daniels
LaShae is one of the hardest workers I have had the pleasure to work with. She does whatever is needed to provide support to the HR Department and staff members. She is pleasant at all times and cares about the work. You can always count on LaShae to step up and take on additional responsibilities for the greater good.
Boulevard - Stacey Friedman
Stacey pushes in to at least 6-8 classrooms each day and team teaches with me in Math. She knows every student and focuses on each student’s unique abilities and interests. She always has a positive attitude and is a great teacher!
Canterbury - Nadine Davis
Nadine continually goes above and beyond, not only for her students, but also as our tech team leader, helping our teachers make the most of the online learning experience for all our kids.
Delisle - Marc Brown
For always going over and above his job and making sure you get what you need and that you are taken care of. Thank you Marc for all that you do! You really helped out when no one could and I/we appreciate you!
Fairfax - Tijuana Schmidt
She is intelligent, kind, willing to help, team player, mother, wife, friend, confidant; TJ will go miles for anyone in her path that needs help. She has been a great example of Teacher and Person. She shows continuous compassion towards her students. She does not mind a challenge and will ask valid questions, when clarification is needed. There are plenty of great teachers in the district, yet TJ is the exception, she is a great teacher and a wonderful person. Smile like sunshine and heart of gold. I nominate the teacher that is always overlooked!
Gearity - Sandy Millard
I (Caren Golenberg) have been out due to illness and Sandy has been my long term sub. Sandy has done everything to make this time for me less stressful and peaceful. Sandy is the ultimate team player. When she found out that she would be taking over my class she told me not to worry about anything! I’m so grateful for all her hard work during such a difficult time for everyone.
Heights High - Joe D'Amato
Joe is always responsive, helpful, and a true team player. Several times this year, Joe has had to perform the uncomfortable task of calling families to inform them that their children may have been exposed to COVID-19. We often get reports that they are grateful for his call. He is a great leader of the athletic department and a great asset to Tiger Nation!
Monticello - Jeff Johnston
My Principal has remained "relentlessly positive" during this crazy pandemic. He, like always, has gone above and beyond to make certain that students and staff have the necessary materials needed to be successful while working virtually. He continues to search for ways to motivate his staff and the students so that they can be successful.
Noble - Nicole Resner
Ms. Resner has been such a great addition to Noble Elementary over the past three years. She creates a welcoming classroom community every year and, even though we are remote to start this year, she has created a class community supporting her scholars' needs. She weaves strong instructional practices into her daily routines and pushes her scholars to achieve great things! Keep showing that Noble PRIDE, Ms. Resner!
Oxford - Kim Anderson
Kim is the security guard at Oxford. She has made this transition with the new COVID protocols smooth and seamless. She greets each person entering the building with a positive tone in her voice and I am sure a smile under her mask. Her positivity eases the tad bit of anxiety people feel as they aren't quite sure what to do or how things are run. I have had parents tell me that she has put them at ease when they are coming to pick up supplies for students and that they appreciate her kind heart and ease. She is much appreciated.
Rox El - Greg Jakab
Greg is a real “team” player. He goes above and beyond his duties as a custodian to help out with other roles. He makes it a priority to keep the school is safe, and clean!
Rox Mid - Mia Huie
Mia has been a dedicated parapro for over 18 years. She is always finds the student who needs just a little bit 'extra' and quietly makes sure they get just that. We're lucky to work with her.
BOE/Bus Depot/Millikin - Autumn Boyd
Autumn is an awesome asset to our department, she helps in every way possible. Autumn is always ready to assist on picking up extra kids not included in her route. She helps out in the office when needed, she is versatile in every aspect. We appreciate her to the fullest! She a true charismatic leader who gets the job done the right way. Her work is impeccable. She is known throughout the school district and the community because she truly cares for our students. We need people like Autumn to make the world a better place. She is an asset to the world.
Boulevard - Kristy Minnillo
Kristy is one of the few teachers I've ever worked with who is able to teach gifted to special needs students within the class and be successful. She is a master at differentiation. No student is left behind in her classroom. The needs of each student are addressed. The students love working with Miss Minnillo. They know she cares about them and is looking out for them. She is always respectful and thoughtful to students and staff.
Canterbury - Kim Salvatore
Kim is modeling for her students the joy of being a life-long learner. She has increased her tech skills and is incorporating new tools into her daily lessons. She engages her students while teaching from her "real classroom" and has active participation by her students. Kim reaches out for help, asks questions, and plans awesome lessons!
Delisle - Kristie Cooper
Dr. Cooper has been a great source of information and inspiration. The self-care tips she shares have been beneficial for staff and students. Also her commitment to keeping our students engaged has been great- the virtual "graduation cap" wall, her bitmoji office, and the email challenge to encourage students to check their email. She has really helped to transition the Options culture to a virtual platform.
Fairfax - Michael Spears
Mr. Spears has always been helpful, but has been especially helpful during these unusual days. He is happy to assist wherever is needed, be it running through the building gathering things for students, dropping items off to families or helping with computer issues. He never complains and helps with a smile. He is a pleasure to have as a coworker and has often said to me, we are a family here, we help each other out. What an amazing attitude and wonderful approach to treating others!
Gearity - Danielle Foran
Virtual learning and teaching in such a way, that, it meets individual needs of students is a hard challenge during these COVID times. But thanks to Danielle's meticulous attention to detail and relentless efforts, the preschoolers in our school district are getting the best education possible. She kept the parents and staff in the loop and her concerns were centered to the individual needs of our youngest scholars and their families. Thanks to her efforts our youngest future scholars have a chance to succeed!
Heights High - Shawn Washington
Shawn Washington goes above and beyond each day for her AVID students, advocating for them, helping them to build life skills, keep up with their work in other classes, as well as focusing on her students' mental health in this virtual space. She celebrates all of her students' birthdays individually, singing and dancing for them, and is a major part in helping seniors sign up for the ACT, FAFSA, and applying to college. The AVID program has been a huge success over the years and it's Shawn Washington's hard work and dedication that has made this so, not to mention the hours she puts in working with students and their families to create stronger bonds and trust. Additionally as a teacher I must say that Shawn has been a mentor to me, taking me under her wing, helping me at every turn, and making me want to be a better teacher.
Monticello - Dan Russell
Dan is a very hardworking, dedicated educator. He has gone above and beyond during this difficult time. He has our kids motivated and excited to be back in class on a part time basis. He has adapted the curriculum to meet the needs of the students in class and on line. He has reached out to the parents of each child and has adapted his program to better meet their needs. This collaboration has made for a very successful beginning to the school year. Everyone is excited to be back in school and this is largely due to the motivation of Dan. He deserves this award.
Noble - Desmond Gregory
Since the day we returned to the school year, Desmond has been on hand to do anything and everything to help our incoming students succeed. And it shows. From putting together learning kits, learning and using new technology, welcoming new scholars into our classroom, assisting me in our virtual classroom needs, Desmond is always willing to lend a great, skilled hand. The scholars and I benefit from his willingness to see everyone succeed and have a positive experience this school year.
Oxford - Jazmine Monroe
Jazmine has gone above and beyond, volunteering her time and patience to help others navigate these new digital waters. She is always willing to answer any question, no matter how small. If she doesn’t know the answer she will find it as soon as she can and get back to you. She’s truly a gem at Oxford.
Rox El - Monique Tinsley
Monique has been such an AMAZING addition to the RoxEl staff! She is so responsive, organized, and helpful. She's helping me organize a lot of aspects of virtual learning so that I can be more efficient and productive in my work with students!
Rox Mid - Joseph Walker
Mr. Walker is consistently kind, challenging and professional with students. He's flexible, works well with others and always does what's best for our classroom.