Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District

Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District News Article

CH-UH Announces District Teacher, Helping Hand, Administrator of the Year

June 3, 2021 -- The CH-UH City School District has named its Teacher of the Year, Helping Hand of the Year, and Administrator of the Year for 2020-2021. We are proud to announce the following winners:
Teacher of the Year
Rebecca McDonald - Math Teacher, Heights High School

Helping Hand of the Year
Octavia Houston - Special Education Aide, Boulevard Elementary School

Administrator of the Year
John Fullerman - 10th Grade Assistant Principal, Heights High School

These three winners will each receive a Dell Chromebook courtesy of CDW-G and registration for a professional development conference in the U.S. within a one-year timeframe.
Selection and announcement process
The initial building winners were chosen by their school colleagues earlier this spring. The Teacher of the Year finalists and Helping Hand of the Year finalists were then selected through district-wide voting, and the Administrator of the Year finalists were selected by the Superintendent's Cabinet. The Teacher of the Year and Helping Hand of the Year overall winners were selected following panel interviews. The Administrator of the Year winner was selected following the finalists' presentations to the Cabinet.

Staff Awards Ceremony
At the ceremony on June 2, the District also recognized several other groups of dedicated employees, including this year’s 28 retirees. They are:

Janet Alexander, Cleaner at Monticello Middle School (19 years)
Lorna Askew, Intervention Specialist at Roxboro Middle School (28 years)
Zakiyyah Bergen, Social Studies Teacher at Roxboro Middle School (28 years)
Ida Bergson, Art Teacher at Canterbury Elementary (20 years)
Laurel Chapman, Instructional Specialist for the District (45 years)
Brenda Cross, Kindergarten Aide at Gearity Elementary (33 years)
Sarah Davis, General Office Assistant at Roxboro Middle School (30 years)
Michele Dawson, Gifted Intervention Specialist at Boulevard Elementary (19 years)
Karen DiLillo, Health/First Aid Teacher at Heights High (19 years)
Michael Dixon, School Counselor at Roxboro Middle School (26 years)
Julie Egre, Kindergarten Teacher at Roxboro Elementary (19 years)
Dr. Donna Feldman, English Teacher at Heights High (20 years)
Erin Goldberg, Intervention Specialist at Gearity Preschool (20 years)
Michael Heffern, Kindergarten Teacher at Fairfax Elementary (33 years)
Lynda Holland, Confidential Administrative Assistant for Student Services (24 years)
Gary Kaserman, Head Custodian at Heights High (29 years)
Ari Klein, Math Teacher at Heights High (33 years)
Svetlana Kozlova, Special Education Aide at Heights High (18 years)
Johnnie Lemons, Criminal Justice Teacher at Heights High (16 years)
Shirley Monroe, Career Technical Education Aide at Heights High (42 years)
Michael Pasquino, District Tradesperson (16 years)
Paul Reble, Intervention Specialist at Heights High (29 years)
Jeannetta Russell, Second Grade Teacher at Noble Elementary (30 years)
Judith Spainhoward, Intervention Specialist at Roxboro Elementary (22 years)
Laura Stuart-Lilley, Special Education Transition Coordinator at Heights High (28 years)
Leonard Tabaj, Computer Networking Teacher at Heights High (14 years)
Todd Watson, Music Teacher at Monticello Middle School (30 years)
Brenda Watts, Cook Manager at Heights High (27 years)

Tiger Nation Awards were given to those who presented at a state or national conference or who were published in a national journal during the 2020-2021 school year. Those recipients are:

Dr. Christina Bauer, Coordinator of Information Technology. She presented “From Crisis to Opportunity: Maximizing Google Tools after COVID-19” at the Ohio Education Technology Conference in February.

Nancy Rich, Art Teacher at Heights High School. She presented “Blended Learning: Redesigning Classroom Culture” at the Ohio Art Education Association Conference in November.

Eric Soltis, Assistant Treasurer for the District. He presented “Restructure Your District Accounting: The Path to Becoming Financially Focused” at the Ohio Association of School Business Officials Webinar in August.

Caryl Yoo, School Social Worker at Heights High School. She presented “Supporting School Social Workers’ Return to School in 2020” at the Ohio School Social Work Association Conference in August. She also presented “School Social Work Missing Links: Connecting Mental Health Services for Students” at the Ohio School Boards Association Capital Conference in November.

Superintendent Liz Kirby recognized Heights High history teacher Mr. Matthew Meister for being named a Distinguished Teacher in the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program. Heights High senior and Presidential Scholar Maple Buescher nominated Mr. Meister for his impact on her education. Maple said that he always challenged her preconceptions and taught her how to ask good questions.

Superintendent Kirby also presented her Cabinet members each with the ACE Leadership Award. In CH-UH, ACE stands for “Adaptability, Collaboration and Equity.” The recipients are:

Cathan Cavanaugh, Supervisor of Communications
Scott Gainer, CFO/Treasurer
Felisha Gould, Assistant Superintendent
Karen Liddell-Anderson, Director of Student Services
Dr. Paul Lombardo, Assistant Superintendent of HR & Operations
George Petkac, Director of Business Services
Bob Swaggard, Director of Curriculum & Instruction

Event Video & Photo Gallery

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