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November Teachers of the Month!

Congratulations to our November Teachers of the Month: Jennifer Steinher, Angela Faust and Kelly Balaz! Thank you to everyone who nominated teachers this month. We had an impressive pool of nominations and it was so satisfying to read from students, parents, and teachers about the difference teachers are making in students’ lives this year.

Take a look at some of the wonderful things their nominators shared about these outstanding educators in Westerville City Schools and be sure to nominate the amazing teachers in your school!

Special thank you to Education First Credit Union, who sponsors our special Teacher of the Month program each month. Winners get $100 to use in their classroom fund, they are featured on our website with past winners, and they get the fame and glory this month.

Congratulations to these teachers and thank you to ALL our Westerville City School teachers for all that you do to support our students!

Emerson Elementary - Jennifer Steinher

“Miss Steinher has been rocking out online and blended learning this year! She has truly embraced the challenge of this unorthodox start to the school year and made it fun and exciting for her students. Miss Steinher went out of her way to make a personal connection with each student during online learning and has taken an immense amount of time compiling a personal learning binder for each student to take home during their ̈at home ̈ weeks for Blended learning. These binders along with her Google Classroom website are so user friendly and organized that my second grader has been able to complete her work completely independently. This has made it so much easier being a full time working parent, working at home along with my own children.” - Family Member of Student

“My son is full of anxiety. He was also diagnosed with autism and some other delays that make learning more difficult. I anticipated the transition back to the classroom to be difficult, but my son is happy and well adjusted! My son was refusing to go to school, something that was common last year as well. He has a friend that's very calming for him, and his teacher made sure they would be sitting beside each other so he had something to look forward to. He's also had to take extra assessments because of his delays, and she's made sure he feels like a rock star. He comes home talking about how he "crushed that test", when his natural inclination would be to say "I suck at this". Keeping him motivated and engaged is going to impact his education long term, and I'm grateful for everything that's being done to make sure my child succeeds.” - Family Member of Student

“Jenn has gone above and beyond with her classroom lessons. She has taken the COVID-19 into a teaching opportunity. Her class is learning about germs and she was just featured by the Westerville City School District. She is kind and works to keep everything and everyone, including staff stay positive. She is a true inspiration!” - Kathy Long, Emerson Staff Member

Whittier Elementary - Angela Faust

“She was very fun and had a lot of personality. Also she was very kind yet still did not tolerate any bad behavior. She taught me in 2nd grade and now I'm in 5th and I still talk to her because she is just a great person. Also my sister who is in eighth grade thought she was one of the best teachers she's ever had.

” - Student

“Mrs. Faust has taught both of my children in 2nd grade. She brings incredible warmth and energy to her classroom. Her love of reading is infectious - especially at a time where developing an affinity for reading is so important. She also has a way of making each child feel unique and special, and not only teaches them critical knowledge but life lessons - about embracing differences and being kind to others. During the beginning of the pandemic last Spring, we were all in uncharted territory but Mrs. Faust went above and beyond to stay connected to her students. She sent daily emails with tasks and optional (fun) learning activities, sent personalized emails to each student, and even left a bag of goodies on our front porch. In a time where everyone felt disconnected, she managed to show how much she cared about the development and well-being of our children. Angela Faust is an incredible teacher and very deserving of this award.” - Family Member of Student

Hanby Elementary - Kelly Balaz

“From the time that we learned that the kids would not be returning to school in-person like a school year might typically start, as parents, we had our apprehensions and were nervous about how everything would play out. From our very first communication from Mrs. Balaz, though, we were tremendously eased and knew that everything would be fine. She has been incredibly gracious, kind, compassionate and understanding as she has gone above and beyond to teach our kids under unusual circumstances. Mrs. Balaz gave kids the assignment of learning how to write an email on the very first day of class this year. I love that my daughter now not only has the technical ability to write an email, but she has learned to be confident in asking her questions and knowing that Mrs. Balaz is available as a resource if she gets stuck. The hard work and dedication Mrs. Balaz puts in is easily evident and weʻd love to see her publicly

recognized.” - Family Member of Student

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