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Posted April 12, 2016

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Good Things Are Happening!

Supt. Reedy gives a shout out to a few of the many individuals and groups in APS earning honors, recognition and awards.

Me and my former student Kristen Bauer

Updated article includes more honors and recognitions that the superintendent learned about since sending this message to APS employees on April 8. 

Wow! There are some really good things going on in Albuquerque Public Schools. Our teachers and staff are earning awards and recognition; our seniors are receiving outstanding scholarships and getting accepted into top-notch schools; our teams and performers are winning competitions; our schools are hosting fairs and open houses and showing off some really innovative teaching and learning.

It makes me proud to be part of such a terrific team.

Congratulations to all of you who have been recognized for the outstanding work you do on behalf of our students. Teachers like our three Golden Apple recipients who were honored in a ceremony on Friday, April 8: Agapita Hopkins, adapted PE teacher at Chaparral and Painted Sky; Paula Jackson, PE teacher at Monte Vista; and Patricia Martinez, special education teacher at Kirtland Elementary. They represent so many of our teachers and staff.

I also want to congratulate Sharon Sharp of Chelwood Elementary who was chosen as the Gilder Lehman History Teacher of the Year for New Mexico.

I love when we are able to show off a little, when the rest of the world gets a glimpse at what’s going on in our schools, whether it be through award ceremonies or national conferences like the Community Schools National Forum that took place in Albuquerque the first week of April. Many attendees from across the nation saw first-hand how successful our community schools are at bringing together educators, families and community partners to offer a range of support and services to children and families.

The national spotlight is shining on our music programs, too: APS was named one of the best communities for music education by the National Association of Music Merchants. Congratulations to Fine Arts Director Luis Delgado and all of our teachers, staff and students who keep the music playing in our schools!

And speaking of fine arts, the National Art Education Association has named our own Michelle Lemons the 2016 National Elementary Art Educator of the Year Award.

There’s so much more to brag about. Like JROTC student Mark Amdahl, who won the national precision air rifle crown under the direction of James Koerber, the Eldorado High School senior Marines instructor. 

Like our five Daniels scholars whose exceptional character, leadership and commitment earned them a four-year scholarship to the school of their choice. Daniels Scholars representing the APS Class of 2016 are Sonia Ramirez of Atrisco Heritage Academy High School; Benjamin Alexander Holubiak of the Early College Academy; Melea Kathleen Thomas of Eldorado High School; Hyesun Choi of La Cueva High School; and Julio de Marcos Avila of Sandia High School.

Like Zuni Elementary teacher Kristen Bauer (who was one of my students when I was a principal at Mitchell Elementary) and others like her who are using social media to reach out to parents. Kristen’s tweets give us a real sense of all the learning that goes on in a first-grade classroom, from engineering rainbows to hold up pots of gold to using finger puppets to help with reading fluency.

Kristen is among those at Zuni who are celebrating their new STEAM room this week. They're opening the innovative learning space to the community on Wednesday.

One way I find out about all these great happenings in our schools is through the APS website and now through the new APS newsletter The Core. I encourage you to visit the website and to read The Core, which will hit employee mailboxes on Wednesday mornings during the school year. They are testaments to all the good that’s going on in public education, to all the great work you all are doing. This is good news that should be recognized and shared.

Sincerely,

Raquel Reedy
APS Superintendent

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