Irving ISD (IISD) presented awards to the Teachers of the Year at Nimitz High School on Thursday, April 29. Teachers from elementary up to high school were recognized for their outstanding work with the District.
“I hope you know how valuable you are to this district for every student that comes through our doors,” Irving ISD school board president Randy Randle said. “You shape our future. You shape our students as to what they are and what they hope to become, and teach students to believe in themselves no matter what the odds, which is extremely evident for this past year. You’re a mentor, a counselor, and without a doubt, a true inspiration.
“I know you do this each and every day, year after year. You’re running for this prestigious Teacher of the Year honor during a school year that has tested educators around the world. And you not only survived; you shined, and on behalf of the Board of Trustees, I would like to congratulate you and let you know how proud we are to have you here in Irving ISD. You’re true game changers, and we appreciate everything you do.”
Superintendent Magda Hernández recognized the 37 Teachers of the Year candidates.
“My hope is that right now, all of you will continue to make Irving ISD your home, because Irving ISD is like family,” Hernández said. “Every single one of you deserves to be sitting here today. Because of your heart. You have to have heart for the job you do, and you do it very well.
“As your superintendent, I am so proud of you and grateful for the hard work you do day in and day out. You are the heartbeat of this district.”
The Elementary Teacher of the Year was Joselyn Castillo a teacher with John Haley Elementary School.
The Secondary Teacher of the Year was Rashaad Callaham with Sam Houston Middle School. The winners not only received flowers and honors, but Sarah Thomas of the Irving Schools Foundation, donated $500 to each Teacher of the Year.
Lucinda Rogers with Gold and Carat Jewelers also donated $500. Don Herring with Don Herring Mitsubishi was the last to present the Teachers of the Year with a fabulous prize, as he has done for the last 16 years: the use of two brand new cars for the next year.
“As those of you who you know me, I’ve got a lot of teachers in my life,” Herrings said. “My sister’s a teacher, my daughter is soon to be a teacher, but my wife of over 20 years now is a fifth-grade social studies teacher, and she takes her kids grades so personal. She takes pride in their success, like all of you do.
“In this last year during COVID, trying to reach kids virtually, you got to learn how to engage them in a new way. The teachers I know have risen, and you guys have risen, to a whole new level. Y’all have had to overcome obstacles that we couldn’t even imagine before 2019. So, my hat’s off to you and sincere ‘thank yous’ to every teacher in this room, to everyone who’s willing to go out there and shape the leaders, shape the business owners, shape the consumers, shape our city and our community of the future.”