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Board Awards – 2017

Board Awards – 2017

Rainbow District School Board paid tribute to dedicated employees and community partners on Tuesday, June 6, 2017 with the presentation of Awards for Outstanding Contribution to the Co-Curricular Program, the Community Partnership Award, Awards for Excellence, the Go Green Globe Awards, the Barbara Konarek Memorial Award and the William N. Roman Teacher of the Year Award. Employees with 25 and 35 years of service were also recognized.

“With the presentation of these awards, we continue a rich tradition of honouring excellence in Rainbow Schools,” said Board Chair Doreen Dewar. “We are proud of our employees and community partners for their commitment. On behalf of the Board, I would like to congratulate all award recipients for their outstanding achievement.”

“The contributions of our individual award recipients vary, but they all have one thing in common,” said Director of Education Norm Blaseg. “They are dedicated employees and dynamic educational partners who go above and beyond the call of duty to reach minds and touch hearts in our schools and the communities that we serve.”

Awards for outstanding Contribution to the Co-Curricular Program – 2017

Image of Wayne Jermyn

Wayne Jermyn – Volunteer – Elementary Track and Field

Wayne Jermyn has made an important contribution to elementary track and field for the past 12 years. When he first volunteered, he knew very little about the technical aspects of athletics. He was thrust quickly into the process and was assigned work at the high jump. After a brief information session, he was confidently left in charge. Since that first day, Wayne Jermyn has been able to learn the technical aspects of the event. He has also learned to work with student athletes and to instruct the teachers who run high jump. In his role as Chief Official, he guides large groups of competitors with efficiency and good humour. He is at the track bright and early for set up and stays long after for take down and clean up. Thanks to volunteers like Wayne Jermyn, students in Rainbow Schools enjoy an exceptional track and field experience year after year. Congratulations Wayne Jermyn!

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Darlene McKetsy – Volunteer – Elementary Track and Field

Darlene McKetsy has been the voice of Rainbow District School Board’s elementary track and field events for 19 years. During this time, she has worked every meet in the elementary track and field series, generously contributing her time and her talent. Darlene McKetsy has also played a major role in the organization of the meets, including helping with set up, assembling information packages, troubleshooting problems to enhance future meets, distributing awards, even making sandwiches at home for volunteer officials. She is a source of information for coaches, and provides a wealth of guidance to those who may be new to their roles. A good announcer helps meets run on time and as efficiently as possible. To this end, Darlene McKetsy is not only a good announcer, she is also a tremendous asset to the many students in Rainbow Schools who participate in the annual track and field program. Thank you Darlene McKetsy.

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Judy Roberts – Volunteer – Elementary Track and Field

Judy Roberts has devoted the past 17 years to the Rainbow District School Board’s elementary track and field meets, even taking holiday time to volunteer for the benefit of students in Rainbow Schools. Her role is significant. She oversees the track portion of the meets, ensuring that all of the races and all of the records run as smoothly as possible. Judy Roberts served as chief timer and chief judge when students and community volunteers oversaw the finish line. Now that electronic photo finish equipment is used, she runs the finish line with just two other people. Throughout her tenure at the meets, Judy Roberts has mentored all the finish line volunteers. The meets run extremely well with Judy Roberts as the Chief Finish Co-ordinator. She is a most deserving recipient of an Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Co-Curricular Program.

Community Partnership Award – 2017

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Randy Pascal

Randy Pascal has worked tirelessly to support student athletes in Rainbow Schools on, Eastlink TV and local newspapers. Through his comprehensive coverage of a wide variety of elementary and secondary sporting events, he has shone the spotlight on teams, athletes and coaches, sharing their story in all sporting venues. Athletes and coaches appreciate and applaud Randy Pascal’s outstanding efforts to celebrate their success. He encourages students to strive for excellence. Randy Pascal has also been an active volunteer on many OFSAA championships, including track and field, hockey and nordic skiing, serving as the primary media contact. In addition, he has made time from his busy schedule to deliver career and sports presentations in secondary schools, and worked as a statistician and head timekeeper for high school hockey. With his friendly nature and genuine interest in the success of student athletes, he is a most deserving recipient of a Community Partnership Award.

Go Green Globe Awards – 2017

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C.R. Judd Public School

Led by teacher and parent Tracey LeGrand, The Tree Huggers at C.R. Judd Public School engage the entire school community in go green initiatives. The team of 30 environmental champions has made a huge difference in changing attitudes and practices while working towards achieving an EcoSchools certification. Students are learning about the development of butterflies, cleaning up the neighborhood, beautifying the schoolyard and gaining first-hand knowledge about the human impact on the environment. They are also participating in challenges to save energy, conserve water, eliminate water bottles, and, reduce, reuse and recycle. Each week, a class is awarded the highly coveted Golden Garbage Can Award for their efforts. Students are learning to be environmental stewards at school, at home and in the community. Accepting the award on behalf of C.R. Judd Public School were teacher and parent Tracey LeGrand, parent David LeGrand, students Sophia and Benjamin LeGrand, Designated Early Childhood Educator Marina Bouffard, Custodian Monique Lachance, teacher Alicia Purvis and Principal Jacques Mantha.

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Espanola High School

Espanola High School, which was recently renovated, is completing its second year of the EcoSchools certification program. Staff and students are now going for gold! A green house greets visitors in the bright and spacious foyer of the school, one of many go green initiatives embraced by students and staff. The entire school participated in the Board’s monthly environmental challenges, such as sweater days, composting, filling up water bottles, garbage cleanups, and litterless lunches. School-wide initiatives include integrating environmental concepts in lesson plans, more recycling of paper and waste, and ongoing community partnerships to regreen the school yard. There are plans underway for a courtyard makeover, including bird boxes and benches made by students. Teacher Andrea Czerniak and Principal Marty Punkari proudly accepted the award on behalf of Espanola High School.

Awards for Excellence – 2017

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Melanie Bertrand – Teacher – Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School

Melanie Bertrand co-ordinates the International Baccalaureate Program at Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School where she has also been a Program Leader for English and a demonstration teacher. Committed and caring, she is a knowledgeable, understanding, and creative educator who has tremendous leadership skills. She keeps abreast of pedagogical trends and provides continuous support to colleagues, ensuring the rigorous standards of the IB program are maintained. As an English teacher, Melanie Bertrand develops strong literacy skills in students. At the senior level, she challenges them to engage in more complex literature, think divergently, work collaboratively, and develop effective presentation skills. Students congregate in her classroom because they know she cares deeply about them. She insists on their best effort and guides them to achieve success. Over the past year, Melanie Bertrand has also played a significant role in the implementation of the Board’s program for international students. Congratulations Melanie Bertrand!

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Angela Bertuzzi – Educational Assistant – Queen Elizabeth II Public School

Angela Bertuzzi has been an Educational Assistant for the past 15 years, most recently at Queen Elizabeth II Public School. With her outgoing nature, sunny disposition, calming presence, and commitment to well-being, she has a natural ability to make students feel better about themselves. Angela Bertuzzi has a keen understanding of the social and emotional needs of children and nurtures strong relationships based on trust and respect. She also instills in students a sense of being loved and cared for. Whether it’s running her famous dance and gymnastics club twice a week or working with countless students during her tutoring sessions, Angela Bertuzzi’s contribution extends well beyond her daily duties as an Educational Assistant. Students flock to these activities and feel a true sense of belonging as they participate. A highly regarded Educational Assistant, Angela Bertuzzi rises to challenges and is a productive team player providing excellent solutions. Congratulations!

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Cindy Blanchard – Teacher – Chelmsford Public School

Cindy Blanchard’s classroom is a busy environment full of smiles, laughter and joy. An exceptional teacher, she has high expectations for student achievement. As a result, students produce quality work and take pride in their accomplishments, knowing they can achieve anything they dream. Cindy Blanchard has embraced her role as a Math Lead Teacher and is an enthusiastic participant in all professional learning activities. A valued member of the school community, she coaches softball, organizes activities to celebrate Indigenous culture, and encourages students to give back to the community through canned food drives and other events. Her ability to inspire extends beyond the classroom and the school. Her down to earth manner and openness allow her to build strong relationships with parents/guardians. They know she genuinely cares about their children, as individuals and as learners. Parents watch their children’s love of learning grow, and are inspired to support their learning at home. Congratulations Cindy Blanchard!

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Luciana Muscolino – Cleaner – Princess Anne Public School

A co-worker said that Luciana Muscolino cleaned Princess Anne Public School like she was cleaning her own home. Lucy joined the Board in 1994 and retired in December 2016. She served at Churchill Public School, Jessie Hamilton Public School, Lockerby Composite School, and finally, Princess Anne Public School, where she was a special person within the school family. Lucy took time from her busy schedule to speak to staff and students, making special connections with many. A kind and compassionate individual, she reached out to individuals who were going through difficult times. Always ready and willing to help a teacher re-arrange a classroom, she also completed the lengthy monthly health and safety inspections with care to make sure the school and the yard were a safe and clean place to work and to play. For dedicated service, Luciana Muscolino is most deserving of an Award for Excellence.

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Dr. Tiffany Roberts – Curriculum Coordinator – Gord Ewin Centre for Education

Dr. Tiffany Roberts is a highly respected instructional leader who is dedicated to student success. As Curriculum Coordinator, she builds professional learning communities, bringing teachers and administrators together to enhance their professional practice and improve student achievement. Dr. Tiffany Roberts guides school-based literacy teams to implement effective learning strategies and leads cross-curricular literacy initiatives to meet the needs of students. She also provides tremendous support for students, teachers and administrators around the administration of the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test. Her colleagues value her leadership style, engaging approach, work ethic and tenacity in the face of challenges. As well, they appreciate her extensive knowledge of the curriculum, deep understanding of data to improve student achievement, commitment to continuous learning, and, above all, willingness to implement innovative teaching strategies. She is able to inspire others to take risks and try new strategies. An exemplary teacher leader, Dr. Tiffany Roberts is most deserving of an Award for Excellence.

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Ramona Shawana – Aboriginal Support Worker – Queen Elizabeth II Public School

Ramona Shawana joined the Board seven years ago as a Designated Early Childhood Educator. Last fall, she assumed a new role as Aboriginal Support Worker. In her brief tenure, she has made an impressive contribution. Ramona Shawana is from Wikwemikong First Nation. She has generously shared her deep Anishinaabe culture and knowledge with students and staff. A pioneer in the implementation of the Early Learning Kindergarten program, she worked with families to better represent Anishinaabe culture and values in the school setting. This led to the inaugural Pow Wow at Princess Anne, which has become an annual highlight for both the school and the community. Since joining Queen Elizabeth II Public School, she has implemented awareness days and other activities to enable all students to learn about Indigenous culture. She has also engaged Indigenous families in their children’s education by creating a classroom culture that reflects an Indigenous way of knowing. Miigwetch Ramona Shawana.

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Sherri Toope – Teacher – Little Current Public School

As a Special Education Resource Teacher, Sherri Toope works with students in all grades, providing programming and support to best meet their needs. Drawing on the expertise of a wide array of special education services, from speech and language pathologists to occupational therapists, she ensures recommendations are implemented. She also builds partnerships with parents and professionals, including First Nations communities, to maximize student success. Students know that Sherri Toope is their biggest advocate, and they respond to her kind, firm and flexible approach with respect. Always open to new and better ways of working with students, Sherri Toope embraces professional learning and is eager to implement innovative teaching strategies. Her knowledge of student learning, special education, programming techniques, and behaviour management, coupled with her strong interpersonal skills and ability to adapt to change, make her an ideal candidate for an Award for Excellence.

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Dayle Wright – Administrative Assistant – Charles C. McLean Public School

As the secretary/administrative assistant at Charles C. McLean Public School for the past 33 years, Dayle Wright not only performs the many duties included in her job description, she also helps to coordinate all special events and makes sure everyone has what they need to be successful. She is a nurse, a counsellor, and a friend. She wipes away tears, caringly applies bandages, orders food and supplies, and keeps the school running smoothly. Charles C. McLean’s greatest champion, she knows how to make sure the students, the staff and the school all have their moment to shine. She works tirelessly in the background, and is never comfortable being in the spotlight, even when it is so well deserved. “Just ask Dayle!” is commonly heard at the school, as she is the go-to person for everything and anything. Her amazing organizational skills and accommodating demeanor are highly regarded and respected. Congratulations Dayle Wright!

Barbara Konarek Memorial Award – 2017

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Monique Whitmore – Teacher – Lansdowne Public School

Monique Whitmore’s love for children shines through in everything that she does. An Early Intervention Teacher at Lansdowne Public School, she works with students who require intensive support. She understands that each student learns differently and adapts her teaching strategies accordingly. In Monique Whitmore’s classroom, each student is full of potential and can thrive given the necessary skills and support. She nurtures the whole child, building on their strengths as well as their social, emotional and academic needs. Some of the integral components of her program include daily social skills lessons, relaxation strategies, emotion coaching and mindfulness. Parents appreciate her open, positive and caring approach. She is quick to share success stories and celebrate milestones. Supporting students with just the right amount of guidance and independence, she leaves them with the tools they need to move forward with confidence. A highly respected and dedicated educator, Monique Whitmore is most deserving of the Barbara Konarek Memorial Award.

William N. Roman Teacher of the Year Award – 2017

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Brenda MacDougall – Teacher – Princess Anne Public School

Brenda MacDougall sets high standards for herself and for each of her learners. At Princess Anne Public School, she is constantly questioning and reflecting to modify her lessons to meet the needs of students. Each child in her classroom is treated with dignity and nurtured to reach his or her full potential. A respected leader in the profession, colleagues appreciate her extensive knowledge of the curriculum, exemplary and innovative teaching practices, and effective classroom management techniques. Brenda MacDougall is consistently sought out for advice and guidance, honed over a 30-year career of continuous learning. Recognizing that parental involvement improves student achievement, she also makes time to build strong relationships with parents/guardians and engage them in the learning process. Innovative, dedicated and caring, her rapport with students, staff and parents is natural and instinctive. Rainbow District School Board is proud to honour Brenda MacDougall with the William N. Roman Teacher of the Year Award.