Area teachers were honored by the St. Charles County Alliance for Business, Learning and Education (ABLE), a partnership between local businesses, education organizations and St. Charles Community College.
The purpose of the ABLE Excellence in Education Awards are to recognize excellence in the teaching profession to those individuals who play a vital role in making a difference in the lives of area children and the community.
Beth Finders, professor of psychology and psychology program coordinator at SCC, received the 2012 ABLE Excellence in Education award in the post-secondary category. During her time at SCC she worked to implement mental health counseling services on campus, was the faculty representative on the college safety and security task force after the tragedy at Virginia Tech, helped organize SCC’s Veterans Week, initiated a campus collection for Joplin recovery efforts and organized a campus food drive for Sts. Joachim and Ann Care Service Food Pantry. Finders was described by nominators as student-focused, energetic and committed, as well as an excellent teacher and mentor.
Amanda Gift, district literacy coach in the Wentzville R-4 School District, received the 2012 ABLE Excellence in Education award in the elementary category. Gift’s responsibilities include teaching in the classroom, planning and collaborating with individual teachers as well as grade level teams, conducting book studies and providing professional development throughout the school year. Nominators described her as having amazing strength of character and as having an abundance of positive energy.
Brad Robertson, social studies teacher at Orchard Farm High School, received the 2012 ABLE Excellence in Education award in the high school category. He sponsors the Fellowship of Christian Athletes group, is an assistant baseball coach and started a new after-school club to promote fitness for both the student body and the faculty. Robertson was described by a nominator as being a caring and supportive teacher and was praised for using research-based practices to sustain student engagement.
Stacy Runion, a lead teacher for the SCC Child Development Center, received the 2012 ABLE Excellence in Education award in the pre-school/kindergarten category. Runion teaches 3-5-year olds. She has presented trainings on Project Construct curriculum and has led various other workshops and seminars at the state and regional level. A parent described her as providing her child with the opportunity to explore, create, learn and establish relationships.
Nomination letters were submitted by parents, current or former students, teachers, staff members, administrators and community leaders.
The St. Charles County Alliance for Business, Learning and Education was created in 2008 in collaboration with local business leaders and participating school district personnel to foster workforce readiness and educational programs for kindergarten through 12th grade students and teachers in the community. ABLE partners with local schools, businesses and organizations to design and deliver quality programs that focus on career development, career readiness and career exploration. For more information on ABLE, visit www.stccable.org.
For more information on the ABLE Excellence in Education Awards or how to become involved in the ABLE organization, contact Tammie De Los Santos, SCC manager of workforce initiatives, at 636-922-8342 or TDeLosSantos@stchas.edu.
Established in 1986, St. Charles Community College is celebrating 25 years as a public, comprehensive two-year community college with associate degrees and certificate programs in the arts, business, sciences and career-technical fields. SCC provides workforce training and community-based personal and professional development as well as cultural, recreational and entertainment opportunities. For more information, visit http://www.stchas.edu.