Weatherford Democrat

January 29, 2014

Tops in their class

County educators named winners of 2014 Jack Harvey honors


Weatherford Democrat

— Ten Parker County educators among honorees named Weatherford College Jack Harvey Academy fellows

Ten Parker County educators were among 32 teachers from across the region honored by Weatherford College at the 2014 Jack Harvey Academy of Exemplary Teachers celebration Friday at the Doss Heritage and Culture Center.

In its 18th year, the Harvey Academy recognizes exemplary teachers in the memory of Professor Emeritus Jack Harvey, who taught at WC for 23 years and was considered among his peers as a “master teacher.”

Each school district selected its own “exemplary teacher,” and submitted nominations with praise and accolades:



Donna Samuel, sixth-grade art teacher, McAnally Intermediate School, Aledo ISD

“Ms. Samuel does an amazing job of teaching art to approximately 150 students every day. She is a leader on our campus. Students and staff would agree that Ms. Samuel is known for her rapport with students, her resilience in life, and the mutual respect she shares with everyone on campus. Her principal reports that he loves to visit her classroom: ‘I learn something about art on almost every visit.’ Not every student leaves her class an artist, but every student leaves with a solid foundation in the fundamentals of art that improves their quality of life.”



Amy Tong, fourth-grade teacher, Walnut Creek Elementary, Azle ISD

“As a fourth-grade teacher, Ms. Tong incorporates project-based learning using engaging lessons that excite her students; this enables them to learn in an innovative way. She continually shares her ideas with her fellow teachers and helps them incorporate technology into their lessons. This mentoring has helped our campus be a leader in the district with technology approaches and usage. Amy was very instrumental in helping get iPads into the hands of students at both the elementary and secondary levels in our district and works diligently to keep them up-to-date and ready for student use. Amy is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in education.”



Faith James, third- and fourth-grade teacher, Brock Elementary School

“Faith James works hard every day to make Brock ISD a great place for our students and community. She is a dedicated, compassionate teacher who fosters confidence within her students and inspires them to reach their full potential. She teaches her students to strive for excellence, to love reading and writing, and to respect each other. Faith believes every child is entitled to an enriched education. Her willingness to work with others impacts all who come in contact with her. She is a dynamic educator who leads by example and encourages staff members to give their best daily. It is with great pride that Brock ISD chose Faith James to represent our district as a Jack Harvey Fellowship Award recipient.”



Marylynn Roever, early literacy teacher, Garner ISD

“Marylynn Roever is a career teacher with many years’ experience with primary grade children. She teaches early literacy at Garner, emphasizing phonics, spelling, reading, grammar, and writing to her first- through fourth- grade students. Mrs. Roever’s dedication to her students is unsurpassed. She is a true master teacher, utilizing her vast knowledge and experience to consistently bring out the best in her students. It is always a joy to visit her classroom because she has something fun happening that her students enjoy and benefit from. She makes time for each and every one of her students. She is so generous with her time and resources. She brightens everyone’s life in unique and thoughtful ways. She is a treasure to work with and an inspiration to her colleagues and family.”



Nicole Andermann, seventh-grade math teacher, Millsap ISD

“Mrs. Andermann is an exemplary teacher because she has an unmatched dedication to helping her students succeed, in math and in life. She has the highest expectations for her students and helps them reach heights they could not reach without her. Her students know from the first day in her class that they will be challenged: Not learning is not an option under her tutelage. She can be seen every day before school helping a classroom full of students master the intricacies of seventh-grade math as well as volunteering after school to help students from other grade levels. This is but a sampling of the reasons that the students and our campus are very fortunate to have Mrs. Andermann at Millsap Middle School.”



Adrian Hinckley, sixth-grade English teacher, Peaster ISD

“Ms. Hinckley extends all means necessary to ensure that her students are engaged and experience success while learning. In just a short time within the profession, Mrs. Hinckley has attracted the attention of her peers and administrative staff. Mrs. Hinckley was chosen by her peers to receive this year’s Jack Harvey Medal for Peaster ISD. Mrs. Hinckley exemplifies what a classroom teacher on today’s campus ought to be. She is kid-focused through and through. She will exhaust all avenues to ensure that a child is successful and engaged. Mrs. Hinckley is not only a fine asset for students in her English classes but she also does not shy away from furthering her qualifications, making her that much more valuable. Mrs. Hinckley is a valuable asset to the overall campus culture at Peaster Middle School.”



Teri Simpson, sixth-grade science teacher, Poolville ISD

“Teri Simpson is a passionate, dedicated teacher and coach at Poolville Junior High School. She is also the head volleyball coach at Poolville High School. In the classroom, the engagement level of the students is second to none. In everything Coach Simpson does she gives 100 percent of herself, whether it’s coaching volleyball or conducting a “Goop, Goo, and Ubleck” science experiment with her classes. She is a consummate professional and a team player. The students love her and it shows daily in the classroom and on the court. In addition to her numerous responsibilities, both athletically and academically, she is also a mentor to two teachers on the PJHS campus.”



Melissa Westberry, kindergarten teacher,  Goshen Creek Elementary School, Springtown ISD

“Mrs. Westberry is exemplary because she encompasses all the traits of a model teacher. She is caring, nurturing, disciplined, and fair. She always puts student learning and student needs above all else. Mrs. Westberry models teacher leadership, and she constantly searches for methods to enhance her teaching ability. She is a true learner and exemplifies what every parent would want for their child from their teacher. She possesses a tenacious attitude and determination to ensure every student is prepared for future learning and successful. A consummate professional, she exemplifies the best of what education entails. Her peers look to her for advice, counsel, and often just a positive word. Mrs. Westberry’s work ethic and resolve for student success have made her an exemplary teacher and a model educator. It goes without saying that Goshen Creek Elementary School is extremely lucky to have Mrs. Westberry serving our students.”



Jeina Dunn, fourth-grade teacher, Mary Martin Elementary, Weatherford ISD

“Jeina Dunn’s path to becoming a teacher is a little different. After graduation, her parents asked her to be a vital part of their family business. And for 17 years, she did that very thing. Time kept passing and the family business continued to grow. But life has a way of taking interesting turns. Her dad was diagnosed with a brain tumor and underwent two surgeries. They sold the family business. Two days after selling the family business she was hired by Weatherford ISD. Jeina dreamed of being a teacher for many, many years. She challenges herself to listen, assist, and guide every student…every day. Each and every human being is unique and special. It is her goal every day to support any student however possible. For her, it is not about the grades that are made, it is about the knowledge retained and put to positive use for ourselves and others.”



Tonya Edwards, respiratory care instructor, Weatherford College

“Tonya Edwards began her tenure at Weatherford College in 1998 as clinical coordinator of the then-newly founded Respiratory Care Program. Her organizational skills and professionalism enabled Weatherford College to establish a highly respected program within the health care community. After several years, Mrs. Edwards became the director of the program. As director, she has always promoted a student-centered environment; she has hired and developed a teaching team with the same philosophy. Mrs. Edwards was one of the first Allied Health Program directors to develop a strategic student retention program for at-risk students in the Respiratory Care Program. She has modeled this program with her faculty; she is an active mentor and tutor within the retention program. Students comment on Mrs. Edwards’ tenacity and professionalism as she shares her passion for the discipline every time she teaches. The high standards she sets for her students are behaviors she models for them as well.”

Other 2013-14 honorees of Jack Harvey Fellowship Awards of Exemplary Teaching were:

• Alvord ISD – Janan Anderson, Grade 6, Math

• Birdville ISD – Gina Marie Bergman, Grade 8, English

• Bowie ISD – Tammy Mathews, Grade 5, Math

• Boyd ISD – Norma Phillips, Grades 7 and 8, English Language Arts

• Bridgeport ISD – Cristina Garza, Elementary Bilingual, Middle School Spanish   

• Burleson ISD – Michelle Sharp, Kindergarten and Grade 1

• Castleberry ISD- Peter Branca, Grades 9-12, Science

• Chico ISD – David Smith, Grades 7 and 8, Science

• Decatur ISD – Rhonda Whiteaker, Kindergarten – Grade 5, Physical Education

• Graford ISD – Derek Wuthrich, Grades 7 and 8, Science, High School Athletics

• Granbury ISD –William Bird, Grade 9, World Geography

• Jacksboro ISD – Janis Besselaar, Pre-K- Grade 5, Special Education/Technology Specialist

• Joshua ISD – Katie Schneck, ESL and Kindergarten

• Lipan ISD –Nicole Irick, Grade 3

• Mineral Wells ISD- Vicki Gregory, Kindergarten, Intervention Specialist

• Muenster ISD – Martha Koesler, Grades 9-12, English Language Arts

• Palo Pinto ISD – Natalie Rogers, Grade 2, Self-Contained

• Paradise ISD – Stephanie Hogan, Grade 9, English Language Arts

• Perrin-Whitt CISD – Joy Easley, Grades 7-12, Business

• Santo ISD – Christy Taliaferro, Grades 9-12, Technology Applications

• Stephenville ISD – Vickie Mabry, Grade 5, Math

• Tolar ISD- Heather Boisjolie, Grades 7 and 8, English/Literature