Middle School News
MRH Teachers of the Year Announced
Hugs and tears were plentiful as four extraordinary educators today were named Teachers of the Year for the Maplewood Richmond Heights School District. Each awardee got an unannounced visit in-class by Superintendent Dr. Karen I. Hall.
At MRH High, theatre and drama teacher Holly Pothoff was honored during a surprise announcement in the library. A colleague remarked "I've never seen her speechless." In his nominating letter, HS Principal Dr. Kevin Grawer wrote, "She puts herself completely out there for her students and colleagues each and every day and there is something so liberating about that. Her students, even the most introverted, in turn, find ways to open themselves up in her class or on the stage." MRH's largest school club is the Thespian Club (over 60 members).
The Middle School teacher of the year is Amy Kruger, teacher of gifted children and technical publications students. MS Principal Mike Dittrich remarked, "Amy has a constant focus on both improving academics and tending to the social and emotional wellbeing of students. She does this all while making sure our staff as a whole is taken care of as well. Amy is our E4 teacher, but her passion for kids does not stop with our highest achieving students. Amy excels in making sure every student who passes the first classroom in middle school in the morning receives a good morning, a hello, or a quick question to engage them. Her efforts are intentional and create an instant sense of belonging for many of our students.
Reading specialist Courtney Mueller holds the crown of Elementary Teacher of the Year. Courtney was lauded by MRHE Principal Dr. Jason Adams for jumping right into her role with new ideas and a fresh perspective. "Courtney is passionate about inclusive and responsive teaching and learning. She thoughtfully selects books that represented her students and models for others inclusive teaching. Courtney is always willing to share her ideas with others and offer support."
The Early Childhood Center teacher is not just the awardee for her school, but also for district-wide Teacher of the Year. This excerpt is from the nominating letter by ECC Principal Dr. Cyndi Hebenstreit: "Kindergarten teacher Rebecca Stobbs is a teacher who demonstrates great passion in her work, consistently goes above and beyond, is a model of teaching excellence, and leads professional development to grow the collective capacity of her colleagues. Rebecca believes in every child she teaches and works from a place of positive regard. She sees it as her responsibility to create the conditions where each child has access to learning to include those children with special needs. She accomplishes this through her dedication to intentional planning and preparation and her commitment to continuous reflection and modification of instruction. Taken together, these actions create an optimum learning environment for each child."
Congratulations to each of these very special educators.
For more information, contact MRH School District at (314) 644-4400.