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News from the Foundation

Posted: November 18, 2022

Two Award-Winning APS Educators Featured on New Mexico Living

The local morning talk show on FOX New Mexico at 9 a.m. every weekday spotlights successful New Mexicans.

Principal Stephani Treadwell and teacher Michelle Perez

Principal Stephani Treadwell and teacher Michelle Perez

The Albuquerque Public Schools Education Foundation is a non-profit for APS. Their funds go towards creative academic projects, programs, and clubs.

Each year, the Foundation recognizes three outstanding educators for their original ideas benefiting their students. Among the honorees:

  • Stephani Treadwell, principal at Collet Park Elementary
  • Michelle Perez, a teacher at Highland High School 

Stephani Treadwell, Collet Park Elementary School  


Stephani Treadwell was born into education and explained that both of her parents were educators. She grew up in that atmosphere and loved it, and she knew that her career path would be in education.

Treadwell brought the 4-H program to her elementary school. This is the first school that she worked in that suffered from a socioeconomic population, and she noticed that the school where there were fewer or no socioeconomic students did better. So she realized she needed to invest in things that her students liked to do such as dance lessons, sports, art lessons, etc. Kids of lower socioeconomic didn’t have that, and she realized it needed to be implemented when the kids were in school. So she brought the 4-H program into the school day. After she added this program, attendance soared, and 23% of chronic absences dropped down to 7%.

Treadwell wishes that kids would have longer school days so these kinds of programs get added and kids would love going to school.

Michelle Perez, Highland High School 

Michelle Perez came up with "Guided Reading for Beginning Readers." She said at Highland they have a high population of refugees and immigrants. Perez said she loves to meet kids where they are and move forward from there. They were able to get a grant for $25,000 for a level library with books from pre-k to 6th grade, and everyone in the school can use it. Perez allows her students to pick a book that they can read and understand.

Perez always knew she wanted to become a teacher. But her road to becoming one wasn’t easy. She moved to the United States from Canada when she was in the 7th grade and she struggle in school. Perez explained how she barely passed and graduated high school. It took her 10 years, but she went back to school at the age of 26. Perez continues to encourage her students that they are never too late or too old to go back to school.

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Tags: Core Schools