The Greater Dundalk Chamber of Commerce is recognizing outstanding teachers from every school in the area and providing them with certificates and gift bags as a way of showing appreciation.
Here is the list of the award recipients:
Megan Frank, English language arts resource teacher
Battle Grove Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Kristi Gallier
Mrs. Frank is a highly valued leader at Battle Grove Elementary. She is focused on working with students and staff to improve instruction and student achievement. She serves as an instructional coach, collaborating with teachers to analyze data, plan instruction, and deliver effective instruction. She is a member of the leadership team, providing weekly professional development and planning support to multiple grade levels. This year, she took on the added endeavor to develop a “Relief in Securing Education” accelerated program for students, and planned and organized, and trained staff. She also served as the program’s lead teacher for kindergarten, first grade, second grade and third grade. The program was highly successful, accelerating students’ reading ability and learning.
Morgan McCaskill, self-contained classroom special education teacher
Battle Monument School
Principal or Dean: Kyle Martin
Ms. McCaskill has demonstrated an aptitude for adjusting and modifying grade-level content standards to meet the needs of her students. She has worked with a wide range of skills within her small classroom, adjusting the learning for each child. It requires her to move slowly and diligently to look at each response or response technique to measure progress. It is that ability to modify the work for the individual student that has made her teacher of the year at Battle Monument School.
Laura Allison, vocal music teacher
Bear Creek Elementary School
Principal or Dean: R. Matthew Corner
Mrs. Allison puts a lot of genuine effort into her vocal music lesson plans, which promote equity, and she effectively teaches music, skills and concepts. She makes sure all students have access to learning, including special needs students. She creates lessons to give students a chance to learn the same topics as their peers. She attends conferences to teach and learn about her field and how to further promote a sense of belonging in her class. She also co-leads an after-school ukulele club, for which she has helped write grants. She fosters positive and trusting relationships with her students. Students regularly share how much they love her and her music class.
Jacklyn Bailey, first-grade teacher
Berkshire Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Cheryl Brooks
Mrs. Bailey is an extremely dedicated teacher, who is patient with students. She has developed strong relationships with all students, and has structures and supports in place for each of them. She is a very caring teacher and always treats her students with respect and kindness. She has strong content knowledge and is always well prepared with engaging lessons for students.
Kelly Petrowski, fourth- and fifth-grade math and content teacher
Charlesmont Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Dawn Hoffmaster
Mrs. Petrowski is committed to her students and the whole school. She runs the after-school “Number Ninjas” program to provide math enrichment to her students. She serves on the fifth-grade Parent-Teacher Association committee, where she coordinates events to make students’ last year at elementary school a memorable celebration. Mrs. Petrowski goes out of her way to make learning fun. When she teaches on the Continental Congress, she comes donned in her judge’s gown and white. She takes an interest in the lives of her students and supports their extracurricular endeavors. She is well respected and a mentor to fellow teachers.
Kristina Knoerlein, fifth-grade classroom teacher
Chesapeake Terrace Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Shandra K. Patrick
Ms. Knoerlein is an amazing teacher. She builds trusting relationships with students, and they want to do all they can to please her. She makes learning fun by incorporating authentic learning experiences and rich discussions. She empowers her students to be critical thinkers and kind, contributing citizens, and she always seizes opportunities to highlight and celebrate the successes of her students.
Diane Blackwood, fourth-grade math and content teacher
Colgate Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Erin Dicello
Ms. Blackwood’s main focus is always planning rigorous math instruction and teaching strategies that support students’ success. She offers additional support before and after school to students, when requested, to help them improve their understanding and skills in math. She has devoted her career to teaching students of diverse backgrounds and keeps a focus on their overall academic achievement and success.
Veronica ‘Roni’ Noone, computer science and information technology professor
Community College of Baltimore County
Principal or Dean: Doug Kendzierski
Roni recently made the CCBC Dundalk campus her permanent campus. She has improved the space by updating the office to make it more welcoming to students, and established a homework help lab for students. She is creative and innovative in the classroom, and her students respond positively to her instructional methods. She has welcomed the “Pathways in Technology Early College High Schools” students with open arms into her courses, providing them with exceptional instruction and a positive experience. She is one of a kind.
Stephany Lawhon, inclusion teacher
Dundalk Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Jennifer Pilarski
Ms. Lawhon uses her previous experiences as a classroom teacher to support students and teachers in early childhood inclusion. She uses her wealth of teaching strategies and trauma-informed practices to support teachers, and designs effective instruction to support students academically, emotionally and behaviorally. She is thorough and thoughtful as she supports families through the Teacher Education and Mentoring (TEAM) Program.
Jamie Darnell, English teacher and department chair
Dundalk High School
Principal or Dean: Paul Satterfield
Ms. Darnell is an established educator and lifelong learner, and has a tremendous amount of school spirit. She builds strong relationships with students, English department teachers, and other school staff. She is a team player who can be counted on to lend support, and is willing to step in to help out in any situation. She is a very well-rounded teacher, with the rare ability to carefully strike a balance between academic excellence and her involvement in extracurricular activities.
LaWanda Hoes, Advancement Via Individual Determination and math teacher, and a team leader
Dundalk Middle School
Principal or Dean: Natalie A. Adams
Ms. Hoes is an experienced math educator, who brings a level of focus to teaching children like no other. She serves as the seventh-grade team leader, working closely with the team to support students. She has an unmatched heart for teaching that flows to her service as advisor of the Joy Makers Club, of which the sole purpose is to spread joy throughout the school. She has turned her passion for couponing into an opportunity to give and donate items to students, staff and families. She is an emerging leader, who delivers pre-algebra and math curriculum to seventh graders with high expectations so that they are poised and ready for eighth grade. She was overwhelmingly selected by her peers to represent the school as this year’s nominee, and all are thankful for everything she does for students, staff and students. She represents Dundalk Owl pride in the best way and persevered exceptionally well after suffering a loss in her family.
Melissa Baldwin, kindergarten teacher
Edgemere Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Charles Ament
Melissa goes way beyond the duties of a classroom teacher in her care for students, colleagues and parents. She, working with her team, creates fun academic activities, such as the Alphabet Runway, that engage her students’ families. She also serves on the Parent-Teacher Association to build community and raise money for the school program. As if that was not enough, she is also orchestrating a spring musical for students. Melissa is shaping the culture of Edgemere Elementary School.
Eric Yeager, physical education department chair
General John Stricker Middle School
Principal or Dean: Laurie Phillips
Mr. Yeager embodies professionalism, school spirit and an absolute dedication to each and every one of our students. He understands the unique needs of a middle school student and strives to support each of them academically, socially and emotionally.
Katie Randolph, first-grade teacher
Grange Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Rachel Davis
Ms. Randolph’s commitment to her students is undeniable, and her enthusiasm for teaching and learning is contagious. She makes learning fun and engaging for each and every student. She is also a school leader and is always willing to share her time, ideas, experience and creativity with other teachers and staff members. She is an invaluable member of the Grange Elementary School family.
Tamika Mobley, sixth-grade math teacher
Holabird Middle School
Principal or Dean: V. Melanie Kearns
Ms. Mobley is a fantastic educator and sponsor of the school’s student council. She keeps her classroom focused on students’ emotional, developmental and academic needs, and students feel safe and loved in her presence as a result.
Zachary Davis, fourth-grade teacher
Logan Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Michael A. Parker
Mr. Davis is a very committed and dedicated professional who is focused on one thing — his students. One of his strongest qualities is that he is always looking for ways to improve his teaching. Logan Elementary has a House Program, and Mr. Davis, along with another teacher, meets with House leaders every Friday morning. He has helped create and shape the program, in which fifth-grade students mentor younger students. He is a highly effective teacher who builds relationships with students, staff and the larger community. He takes time to work with less-experienced staff to make sure they are successful. He has spent many hours building relationships with students, parents and colleagues, and people respect his judgment. He is a true professional and role model.
Madison Brown, first-grade teacher
Norwood Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Candice Stafford
Ms. Brown is an outstanding teacher. Her passion and continuous drive to be a teacher of excellence is inspiring and refreshing.
Amy Cote, kindergarten teacher
Our Lady of Hope / St. Luke School
Principal or Dean: Sister Irene M. Pryle
This year, Amy piloted an innovative phonics program, which helps her students with word recognition. She implemented science, technology, engineering and mathematics activities to keep students engaged and active. She created individualized toolboxes for each student to personalize learning. She is always up for a challenge, and her flexibility is one of many positive attributes that she contributes to the school.
Ronald Poole, special education teacher
Patapsco High School
Principal or Dean: Scott Rodriguez-Hobbs
Mr. Poole goes above and beyond to help his students succeed. He is always working to improve his craft. He is dedicated not only to his students but also to helping his fellow teachers.
Megan Oakey, social emotional learning teacher
Sandy Plains Elementary School
Principal or Dean: Christina Davis
Ms. Oakey goes above and beyond to build relationships with students across all grade levels. She has also developed positive, supportive relationships with staff members. She provides group and individualized professional development to teachers, especially in the areas of relationship building and behavioral management. Students and staff trust her and rely on her expertise and support.
Jeffrey Smith, culinary arts teacher
Sollers Point Technical High School
Principal or Dean: Kathleen Setzer
Mr. Smith uses a cadre of strategies to support student engagement and knowledge. He displays a passion for culinary arts, and he actively takes part in creating a positive culture for the school and community. He leads the food truck project in which students learn the culinary business by developing themes and serving at community events. Students learn food preparation and customer service skills through the project. In the classroom, students learn the art of planning and plating meals that meet the expectations of customers. Mr. Smith prepares his students, who will graduate with multiple certifications, to meet the rigorous demands of the culinary arts industry and have a successful career.
Eric Webber, health and physical education department chair
Sparrows Point High School
Principal or Dean: Emily Caster
While Eric’s skills and knowledge are superior, his friendliness and ability to connect with people are what make him stand out. He builds meaningful relationships with all stakeholder groups, who demonstrate fondness and respect for him. He tackles challenging situations with a high degree of professionalism and ensures that the mission is accomplished, with an admirable level of expertise and enthusiasm. He goes above and beyond for anyone in need. He is famous for saying, “Webb’s got it.” Simply put, he is a kind and generous person and educator.
Stefanie Kjaeroe, math teacher
Sparrows Point Middle School
Principal or Dean: Jennifer Gounaris
Ms. Kjaeroe is a passionate educator, who is driven to impact positive school culture by pairing social-emotional connectedness with the maintaining of high expectations for rigorous learning inside and outside the classroom. This school year, she has taken on roles in student government, and as a tutoring coordinator, professional development teacher liaison, and an Advancement via Individual Determination school-based team member. She has taken on these roles, while maintaining a full teaching schedule for advanced math and pre-algebra. While building relationships and delivering high-quality instruction remain her top priority, Ms. Kjaeroe dedicates much of her personal time to working with students individually and attending after-school events. As a result, her students and colleagues know they can always count on her to show up for them.