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Roxbury Board of Education Honors Teachers of the Year

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Roxbury Township Public Schools, a K-12 district preparing the children of today for tomorrow, recognized its 2016/2017 Teachers of the Year at its Monday, May 8th Board of Education meeting at Lincoln/Roosevelt School.

Community members, parents, students, staff, and families joined the Board in their recognition of these individuals.

“These Teachers of the Year exemplify high expectations for all students, an ability to foster feelings of self-worth and a love of learning, and the skill to create a student-centered environment,” said Roxbury Superintendent of Schools Loretta Radulic. “They represent all of the talented, committed, and knowledgeable teachers in Roxbury, and it is a pleasure to honor them.”

The Teachers of the Year this year cover the scope of education, from general education to special education to the specials.

Roxbury Teachers of the Year 2017

  • Cathy Freund (Franklin)
    Cathy Freund (Franklin)

    Cathy Freund (Franklin)

  • Cheryl Jones (Roxbury High School)
    Cheryl Jones (Roxbury High School)

    Cheryl Jones (Roxbury High School)

  • Karen Kovarik (Kennedy)
    Karen Kovarik (Kennedy)

    Karen Kovarik (Kennedy)

  • Marie Pessolano (Eisenhower Middle School)
    Marie Pessolano (Eisenhower Middle School)

    Marie Pessolano (Eisenhower Middle School)

  • Abigail Scales (Nixon)
    Abigail Scales (Nixon)

    Abigail Scales (Nixon)

  • Jennifer Smith (Lincoln/Roosevelt)
    Jennifer Smith (Lincoln/Roosevelt)

    Jennifer Smith (Lincoln/Roosevelt)

  • Jennifer Toupet (Jefferson)
    Jennifer Toupet (Jefferson)

    Jennifer Toupet (Jefferson)

  • EMS Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Dominick Miller and Marie Pessolano
    EMS Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Dominick Miller and Marie Pessolano

    EMS Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Dominick Miller and Marie Pessolano

  • Franklin Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Lisa Ferrare and Cathy Freund
    Franklin Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Lisa Ferrare and Cathy Freund

    Franklin Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Lisa Ferrare and Cathy Freund

  • Jefferson Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Melissa Cosgrove and Jennifer Toupet
    Jefferson Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Melissa Cosgrove and Jennifer Toupet

    Jefferson Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Melissa Cosgrove and Jennifer Toupet

  • Kennedy Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Eric Renfors and Karen Kovarik
    Kennedy Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Eric Renfors and Karen Kovarik

    Kennedy Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Eric Renfors and Karen Kovarik

  • Lincoln/Roosevelt Teacher of the Year with Building Administrators (pictured left to right): Interim Principal Bud Beavers, Jennifer Smith, and Assistant Principal Chris Argenziano
    Lincoln/Roosevelt Teacher of the Year with Building Administrators (pictured left to right): Interim Principal Bud Beavers, Jennifer Smith, and Assistant Principal Chris Argenziano

    Lincoln/Roosevelt Teacher of the Year with Building Administrators (pictured left to right): Interim Principal Bud Beavers, Jennifer Smith, and Assistant Principal Chris Argenziano

  • Nixon School Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Danielle Lynch and Abigail Scales
    Nixon School Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Danielle Lynch and Abigail Scales

    Nixon School Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Danielle Lynch and Abigail Scales

  • Roxbury High School Year of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Jeffrey Swanson and Cheryl Jones
    Roxbury High School Year of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Jeffrey Swanson and Cheryl Jones

    Roxbury High School Year of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Jeffrey Swanson and Cheryl Jones

  • Roxbury: Teachers of the Year Group
    Roxbury: Teachers of the Year Group

    Roxbury: Teachers of the Year Group

  • Roxbury: Teachers of the Year
    Roxbury: Teachers of the Year

    Roxbury: Teachers of the Year

Each building administrator introduced and praised their school’s teacher of the year sharing antidotes from their personal experience, from a student or staff member, or from a parent of a child in the school.

Here are just a few of the brief comments made in regards to each of the Teachers of the Year.

Newly appointed Franklin Principal, Lisa Ferrare said that she has only worked with Cathy Freund, her teacher of the year for a short while but has seen her impact. Freund is a second-grade teacher at the school. Ferrare shared some of the comments from the nomination forms in regards to Freund. “Mrs. Freund creates a safe learning environment. She is a positive force in the school. She makes learning fun for all her students and creates a warm atmosphere throughout the building. Mrs. Freund inspires. She knows how to bring out the best in her students and her warm, positive, caring demeanor will be greatly missed this year as Mrs. Freund retires from Franklin School.”

Jennifer Toupet, a second-grade teacher at Jefferson School is that school’s Teacher of the Year. Principal Melissa Cosgrove shared, “While visiting Mrs. Toupet’s classroom you can’t help but to feel excited about learning. There is always so much happening and Jen is the dynamic conductor behind it all. Her positivity is contagious. I am proud to have her as a colleague and we are all lucky to have her talents here in Roxbury.”

Kennedy School’s Teacher of the Year went to Karen Kovarik, a BSI/Computer teacher at the school. Principal Eric Renfors mentioned, “Parents nominated her for the wonderful website that she maintains with so many valuable resources and leading school-wide events celebrating the Hour of Code and the annual Sum Dog contest. She was recognized for inviting parent volunteers into her room on a weekly basis and it has been said more than once that the parents learn as much from her as the students. She is an invaluable resource to our staff, serving as the technology teacher, ISL math teacher, and de-factor support person for all things technology.”

Nixon Principal Danielle Lynch shared this regarding Abigail Scales, Kindergarten Teacher at her school. “Mrs. Scales, who is in her fifth year of teaching at Nixon School, is the ultimate professional. According to many staff members at Nixon, Abbie is a compassionate and passionate teacher, who sets high expectations for herself and her students. She varies her teaching methods so as to optimize learning and to ensure that her lessons achieve the goal that she has set forth.”

Lincoln/Roosevelt Assistant Principal Chris Argenziano shared one co-worker’s comment regarding his Teacher of the Year, Jennifer Smith, a fifth-grade teacher at the school. “I think that the staff at L/R is amazing and while I feel there are many who are deserving of this award, the one who sticks out to me as going above and beyond every day is Jenn Smith. Jenn is one of the most hard-working individuals I have ever met. As far as curriculum, she knows it inside and out and can give you standards off the top of her head. She creates tests, quizzes, study guides and projects that are all aligned with the standards and is always willing to share them with her group. She is a team player and works well with everyone.”

Marie Pessolano was named as Eisenhower Middle School’s teacher of the year. Principal Dominick Miller played off her position as an art teacher in his accolades of her saying, “Marie is the teacher of the Year for EMS. She puts HEART in art. She builds her students like a fine sculpture. She doesn’t care if her students are abstract or conceptual. She loves them all. She is a Renaissance woman. She is a masterpiece and she is our Teacher of the Year.”

Roxbury High School Principal Jeff Swanson shared an antidote from a fellow staff member regarding his teacher of the year, Cheryl Jones. Jones is a special education teacher at the school who works in co-teaching classrooms with Bruce Heike in senior English and Frank Misurelli in US History classes.

That co-teacher shared, “Cheryl does not work with the AP students, or Honors students, or with the gifted students…No Cheryl works with the angry, with the struggling, the IEPs and the 504s—if they don’t have an icon by their name in Genesis, they probably are not one of hers. Her students don’t arrive each day expecting accolades and acclaim, they come in quietly, sheepishly, hesitantly, praying not to be embarrassed in class, and hoping to find a guide to help them survive. Cheryl is that guide. She consoles, quiets, calms, encourages, nurtures, mothers, and teaches her pupils.”

Congratulations to all of Roxbury’s 2017 Teachers of the Year!

The 2016/2017 Teachers of the Year for the Roxbury School District are as follows:

School

Staff Member

Assignment

Roxbury Years of Experience

2016/2017 Teachers of the Year

Roxbury High School

Cheryl Jones

Special Education Teacher

27 Years

Eisenhower Middle School

Marie Pessolano

Art Teacher

11 Years

Lincoln/Roosevelt School

Jennifer Smith

Grade 5 Teacher

18 Years

Franklin School

Cathy Freund

Grade 2 Teacher

27 Years

Jefferson School

Jennifer Toupet

Grade 2 Teacher

3 Years

Kennedy School

Karen Kovarik

BSI/Computer Teacher

28 Years

Nixon School

Abigail Scales

Kindergarten Teacher

5 Years

IMAGE ATTACHED (courtesy of Roxbury Township Public Schools)

- Roxbury Teachers of the Year Group Picture

- Roxbury Teachers of the Year Head Shots Group Picture

- Head Shot – Cathy Freund (Franklin)

- Head Shot – Jennifer Toupet (Jefferson)

- Head Shot – Karen Kovarik (Kennedy)

- Head Shot – Abigail Scales (Nixon)

- Head Shot – Jennifer Smith (Lincoln/Roosevelt)

- Head Shot – Marie Pessolano (Eisenhower Middle School)

- Head Shot – Cheryl Jones (Roxbury High School)

- EMS Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Dominick Miller and Marie Pessolano

- Franklin Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Lisa Ferrare and Cathy Freund

- Jefferson Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Melissa Cosgrove and Jennifer Toupet

- Kennedy Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Eric Renfors and Karen Kovarik

- Lincoln/Roosevelt Teacher of the Year with Building Administrators (pictured left to right): Interim Principal Bud Beavers, Jennifer Smith, and Assistant Principal Chris Argenziano

- Nixon School Teacher of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Danielle Lynch and Abigail Scales

- Roxbury High School Year of the Year with Principal (pictured left to right): Jeffrey Swanson and Cheryl Jones

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