School district recognizes award winners

PHOTO BY ANGELINA DELLA ROCCO/PLAINSMAN Winners at Wednesday night’s Huron School District Banquet and Awards event included, from left: Dianne Tapken and Jodi Walter, the co-Classified Employees of the Year; Kathy Curr, the Elementary Teacher of the Year; Heather Sieh, the Professional Support Staff Member of the Year; Kristi Winegar, Middle School Teacher of Year and Amy Velthoff, High School Teacher of the Year.

HURON — As the school year winds down, the Huron School District recognized some of its own Wednesday night, at the district’s annual banquet and award dinner at the Huron Event Center.
“A focus this year has been development of leaders this fall we will take another step in training our teachers in personality traits possessed by each of our students that we serve, on this night the most important personality trait for us all to focus on is the positive relationships we have with the people we work with,” said Superintendent Terry Nebelsick while adressing the attendees.
District employees, teachers and administrators were on the edge of their seats, as the reveal of the Classified Employee of the Year, Professional Support Staff Member of the Year and Teacher of the Year were on the evening’s agenda.
Huron Middle School Principal Laura Willemssen announced that the Professional Support Staff member of the Year is Heather Sieh, a counselor at the Middle School.
The Teacher of the Year winners include one instructor from each of the three levels in the school district. Assistant Middle School Principal Kari Hinker announced that the this year’s honorees are Kathy Curr, a second-grade teacher at the Madison 2-3 Learning Center, for the Elementary level; Kristi Winegar, an eighth-grade instructor at Huron Middle School and Amy Velthoff, a Health and Physical Education teacher at Huron High School.
According to Hinker, Teacher of the Year nominations come from a variety of sources, including parents, their students and community members. Each Elementary school building has a teacher nominated and three are nominated at both the Middle and High School.This year’s other Elementary school nominees are Krissa Korkow, from Buchanan K-1 and Megan Hein from Washington 4-5. Middle school nominees include Melody Witte and Heidi Blue, while Wade Stobbs and Delretta Halverson were nominated from Huron High School.
The Classified Employee of the Year is chosen from among the monthly winners chosen throughout the school year.
Carol Tompkins announced that this year, just like last year, two of the district’s Classified Employees would share the award, as Dianne Tapken and Jodi Walter were each selected.
On the form for Tapken, when she was Employee of the Month last December, her nominator summed up her impact as an administrative assistant in the ESL (English as a Second Language) and Federal Programs as “invaluable.”
“Dianne’s dedication to her work and to the Huron School District is without reproach, as nearly every day she arrives early and stays late.”
Walter, a Speech Language Pathologist assistant at the Madison 2-3 Learning Center, was January’s Employee of the Month. Her nomination form notes her devotion to her work and to her students at Madison. “Jodi celebrates student successes and encourages them to do their best.”

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