Abrahams honored as Teacher of the YearPublished 11:14am Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Derek Abrahams has been selected by his peers to be the 2012 Teacher of the Year for the Fergus Falls Public Schools, where he has been a social studies teacher since 1996. He graduated from Bethel College in 1994 with a major in history, a major in 7-12 social studies and minor in coaching. Mr. Abrahams earned his Masters Degree in Educational Leadership from MSUM in 2008 and his Principal’s Licensure during the summer of 2011.
Mr. Abraham’s philosophy of education is that you must have a passion for what you teach. You must believe in it and know its importance. Without that passion, it is impossible to convince (teach) others. With that passion, you have the opportunity to go to work everyday and discuss something you truly enjoy.
Mr. Abraham believes the best part of teaching is developing new ways to share information in order to reach students.
Secondly, he believes it must be your goal to share that passion with others. By doing these things, teaching becomes a purpose and way of life, rather than a job.
Other teachers nominated for the award were Nancy Dahl, second grade teacher at Adams; Kacie Holcomb, social studies teacher at ALC; Shelly Kangas, sixth-grade teacher at Kennedy; Renee Larsen, second-grade teacher at Adams; Sue Moore, second-grade teacher at Adams and Nancy Reard, special education teacher at Adams.
Staff of the Year
Congratulations to this year’s Support Staff of the Year winners – Kim Dowzak, Lori Jensen and Carol Tweten, who all work at Kennedy Secondary School. We would also like to congratulate all the nominees including Stacy Boese, Andrew Gunther, Rayelle Hite and Judy Stock
Kim Dowzak, Counseling Registrar, Secretary is caring, helpful, organized, accurate and efficient and is extremely valuable to the counseling office.
She handles a high volume of very important paperwork that demands perfection and is highly skilled in the student management system. She has a great sense of humor and is an important reason why many enjoy coming to work every day.
Lori Jensen, LPN, has been a smiling face in the 544 District for many years. Last year, she accepted a position in the nurse’s office and is a welcomed comfort to all of our students who are ill or have ongoing medical issues.
She is never too busy to listen to their needs or concerns. She is a valued support — both physically and emotionally — for so many of our students, who appreciate Lori’s patience and care. Her great sense of humor also raises the spirits of many staff and students as well.
Carol Tweten, Special Education Paraprofessional is a very dedicated, organized and caring person. She is willin to go the extra mile for any student to help them become successful and to gain a positive self-worth. When dealing with difficult student situations, she is very patient and is able to re-direct them in a positive way.
Carol is also the one who reaches out to many of the new students in the special education program and helps them feel accepted and important. It is very evident that she is always working for the students and willing to help any staff member.