The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh College of Education and Human Services (COEHS) recognized three teachers with the Elementary Teacher Excellence award as part of the Celebrate Education event on March 20.
Celebrate Education is an annual event that honors local teachers, principals, coaches and volunteers for hard work and dedication to students within the community. The event is sponsored by local community leaders, including the Mid-Morning Kiwanis Club of Oshkosh, Oshkosh Chamber of Commerce, Wisconsin Public Service Foundation, Oshkosh Area School District, UWO College of Education and Human Services and the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation. By partnering, thousands of dollars in grants were awarded to educators whose programs make a difference in the lives of children throughout the community
Since Celebrate Education began in 2005, there have been a total of $179,151 (as of 2016) awarded to educators in the Oshkosh community.
The Elementary Teacher Excellence award, sponsored by the UW College of Education and Human Services, honors caring professionals in education, counseling and human services who impact education and social programs in a global society. The award provides access to professional development or the purchase of supplies to enhance the classroom.
Area elementary principals nominated outstanding teachers and award recipients were selected by the COEHS committee. This year’s honorees are as follows:
Jackie Trebiatowski BSE ’08, is a third-grade teacher at Carl Traeger Elementary School and has been teaching for more than nine years. Every day, Trebiatowski works to instill a sense of gratitude in her students because grateful people often show lower levels of depression and stress. Her students engage in random acts of kindness and in February paper notes filled with appreciation could be found throughout the building. Like her students, Trebitowski is an avid learner and always takes the opportunity to engage in professional development opportunities. Trebiatowski was nominated by Principal Brenna Garrison-Bruden ’00.
Mary Hendricks MSE ’99, BSE ‘94, is a third-grade teacher at Oaklawn Elementary School and has been teaching there for more than 21 years. Known for her genuine care and concern, Hendricks takes extra time to build rapport with individuals who are having difficulty making connections within the classroom . Hendricks has taken opportunities to observe instruction in other schools, attend conferences and collaborate with other educators in order to implement best practices in her classroom. One initiative implemented at the school is the Oaklawn Community News Network, which strives to share strategies for students to build connections through greetings and interviews, find joy though the joke of the day, and learn to focus better through brain breaks. Hendricks was nominated by Principal Scott Johanknecht.
Ellen Schutt is a first-grade teacher at Valley Christian School and has been teaching for 22 years. Schutt’s joy is contagious as she challenges her students to grow as individuals and not just absorb the material. Students find that learning through play allows them to develop their unique personalities and find their working style. Former students come back regularly to connect with Schutt because she celebrates their current successes as much as she did when they were in her classroom. Schutt was nominated by Principal Scott Freund.