KCSD, WCSD & OASD teachers win Citadel Heart of Learning Award

1,200 nominated – three take home top honors

By Kim Chiomento, News Editor, The Times


(L-R) Julie Myers, Michael Kelly and Sally Bopp

EXTON – The prestigious Citadel Heart of Learning Award winners were announced this week; with 1,200 Chester County teachers nominated, 15 finalists selected and three award winners announced. Each winner is the top candidate in the high school, middle school and elementary school categories.

The 2015 winners are: Kennett High’s Mike Kelly, Penns Grove Middle School’s Julie Myers and West Chester Howse Elementary School’s Sally Bopp. Each winner will take home a prize of $1,500 for classroom use in addition to the $500 each were awarded as a finalist.

The Citadel Heart of Learning Award was launched in 1991 and is a joint venture between Citadel Bank and The Chester County Intermediate Unit to recognize excellence in education. The fifteen finalists represent one public school teacher from each of the 13 school districts in Chester County, one teacher from the Chester County Intermediate Unit and one teacher from a Chester County non-public school, which also includes charter and home schools.

The Citadel released the following statements about each of the winners:
Mr. Kelly is a 45-year veteran teaching secondary mathematics with the Kennett School District. He is the Mathematics Department Chairperson, the Senior Class Advisor, President of the Kennett Education Association, and serves on the Professional Development, New Teacher Induction, and Teacher Evaluation committees.


KCSD’s Sue Yocum congratulate’s Mike Kelly on winning the Citadel Heart of Learning Award

Ms. Myers is a gifted students teacher who has been with the Penn’s Grove Middle School for six years. She is a key member of the school improvement team which analyzes the school level PVAAS data, Study Island data and other school based assessments. She volunteers to co-teach to support a specific instructional. In addition to performing her instructional duties as the Gifted Teacher, she collaborated with a 7th grade math teacher to co-write and develop a new 8th grade enrichment class called Academic Enrichment through I pads.

The Times received the following accolades from the winner’s respective school districts, we are pleased to share a few:

Dr. Barry Tomasetti, Kennett Consolidated School District’s Superintendent says, “Mr. Kelly’s content knowledge in the area of mathematics is beyond reproach. Graduates who head off to higher education and are engaged in a mathematical field provide us with feedback on the success they are achieving due to their work with him…His availability to our students before or after school or during his planning periods for additional instruction goes a long way in developing productive relationships. Additionally, he makes his rounds at extra-curricular activities that further demonstrates to his student that they matter to him. His instruction does not end with a test grade as he meets with students to reteach problems that they could not solve. Essentially, his tests are tools to measure the strengths and weaknesses of his students so that future instruction becomes more prescriptive.”

Kennett High’s Principal, Dr. Michael Barber says, “Mike Kelly is a so deserving of this honor. When I close my eyes and think of a caring, dedicated, and student friendly teacher – Mike Kelly is the one who comes to mind. He has had a tremendous impact on our students and touched the lives of so many in our great community.”

Oxford Area School District’s Superintendent David Woods says, “Julie is a stellar teacher at Penn’s Grove School. Her dedication to the students and the craft of teaching is indicative of the staff throughout our District. We are happy for her and grateful to the members of Citadel for their commitment to recognizing teachers’ hard work throughout Chester County.”

heart-of-learning-logo “Mrs. Myers has displayed the highest standards of initiative, innovation, educational knowledge and leadership. She understands how to challenge and extend our students thinking which makes her a stand-out Gifted Teacher…her level of certifications and diverse pedagogical knowledge makes her an extremely dynamic classroom teacher and a valuable and contributing educational leader at the building and district level,” says Penns Grove Middle School Principal Lisa Stentz, “Mrs. Myers does this by modeling the highs standards of honesty, integrity and professionalism as an educator and an educational leader.”

“Sally Bopp is the kind of teacher every parent wants their child to have,” said Jim Scanlon, superintendent of the West Chester Area School District. “She is humble, kind, caring, has high expectations for her second grade students, and can often be found working late at night preparing creative lessons for her class. It’s not uncommon for Sally to receive college graduation and even wedding invitations from her former students – that’s the kind of impact she makes on students’ lives on a daily basis.”

Mary C. Howse Elementary School Principal, Dr. Stephen Catrambone says, “Sally Bopp is a true consummate professional educator. She not only personally invests her own time, but her heart and soul go into every lesson she prepares. Sally can be seen bringing items in from her home from time to time to enhance and personalize instruction and when the night crew is cleaning, they often stop to chat as Sally is here well into the evening. She takes such pride in every student and especially enjoys maintaining contact with them even into adulthood. Many former students have come back to visit, some have written to her and some have even invited her to high school graduations, college graduations, special award ceremonies and even personal celebrations! Mary C. Howse is extremely fortunate to have our ‘Sally’!”

For more information about the Citadel Heart of Learning Award, its nominees and a list of previous winners visit: www.citadelbanking.com/why-choose-citadel/community-involvement/citadel-heart-of-learning

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