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Posted April 5, 2011

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‘Stellar’ Manzano Mesa Teacher Rewarded

Jayne Deissinger, right, and her third-graders at Manzano Mesa Elementary handled a temporary move smoothly when broken water pipes flooded their classroom.

Jayne Deissinger seems to be involved in most of what happens at Manzano Mesa Elementary, whether it’s chairing the design team, collecting food for holiday baskets for the needy, organizing parent workshops or moving because of broken water pipes.

Deissinger has been named Pepsi/APS Education Foundation Teacher of the Month for March. A third grade teacher, she has spent her four-year teaching career at Manzano Mesa.

“I know it sounds cliché, but this is the hardest job in the world, and the most rewarding,” Deissinger said. “Teachers do more than just educate.”

Though relatively new to teaching, she has thrown herself into it. Deissinger is working on acquiring a grant to help Manzano Mesa become a community school. She helps with the school’s clothing bank and with providing food for needy students on weekends.

“She’s a stellar teacher,” Manzano Mesa Principal Peggy Candelaria said. “She’s stable, always here for her students. Just phenomenal.”

Deissinger was a physical therapist before finding her way to the classroom. She said she had a great career, but was looking for a way to “help children experience all the wonders that are possible in education.” She also acknowledged all the help she has received from her MMES colleagues.

“I’m just a teacher like others,” Deissinger said. “There are many great ones, especially here at Manzano Mesa. They’ve helped me a lot.”

“The devotion between teacher and students was obvious when we visited her classroom,” APS Education Foundation Executive Director Phill Casaus said. “This award allows us to get just a small glimpse at all the incredible things that happen in APS classrooms every day.”

Pepsi joined forces with the Foundation last school year to create the monthly recognition for teachers. Award-winners receive $50 from Pepsi.

“It’s a good day when the kids are happy,” Deissinger said. “They thank me and say they can’t wait to come back tomorrow. That’s how I know it’s been a successful day.”

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