Sunday, May 29, 2016
Back row, left to right: John Kretsos, Curt Ehrenstrom, Gregory Regalado, John Paulett, Kevin Carroll; Front Row, left to right: Elizabeth Copper, Jill Krysinski, Linda Egnatz, Katherine Dube. Not pictured: Scott Galson
Now in its 28th year, The Golden Apple Awards for Excellence in Teaching, hosted by WTTW’s Geoffrey Baer, honors ten outstanding teachers in the Chicago area. This year’s Awards focus on high school teachers. Winners were chosen from among hundreds of teachers nominated by colleagues and students. The final selection was made by a panel of education experts chosen by the Golden Apple Foundation.
Concert Band, Jazz Band, Pep Band, Marching Band. Joliet West High School, Joliet.
Kevin teaches three levels of concert bands, two levels of jazz ensemble, marching band, pep band AND orchestra. During his time at Joliet West High School, he has grown the band program from fewer than 60 students to more than 200.
AP Environmental Science. Lindblom Math & Science Academy, Chicago.
Elizabeth came to teaching from a background in public health. She treats her students as purposeful adults – environmental scientists, city planners, forensic scientists – not high school students, and sets their sights high, towards college attendance.
Reading. TEAM Englewood Community Academy, Chicago.
Katherine enjoys the challenges of teaching a diverse group of students who come to her with a range of reading levels. Last year, she helped her students attain the highest reading gains for a ninth grade school within the 17 high school network.
Spanish III, Spanish IV, Spanish V, AP Language, AP Literature. Lincoln-Way North High School, Frankfort.
Linda’s goal is to help students learn Spanish that will help them in real-life situations such as asking or giving directions, and reading bilingual signage. She also encourages students to put their language skills to the test by leading a yearly Spring Break trip to Spain, Mexico, Honduras and Argentina, among others.
Physics, Honors Physics, AP Physics, Football and Water Polo Coach. Mount Carmel High School, Chicago.
Curt came to teaching from a background in the Humanities. Nevertheless, he is committed to marrying an old-fashioned Socratic approach to teaching with the benefits of technology and a hands-on lab component. His students, with whom he forms close relationships, call him Coach E.
Algebra, Statistics. Walter Payton College Preparatory High School, Chicago.
A successful alumnae of the Golden Apple Teacher Education (GATE) alternative certification program, Scott creates a student-centered classroom where the students grapple with problems collaboratively and are encouraged to make mistakes.
Honors Chemistry, Chemistry. Niles North High School, Skokie.
John’s subject lends itself to a certain amount of showmanship, and he does not disappoint. From explosions to punnery, he keeps his students engaged in their subject and looking forward to class every day.
Biology, Environmental Science, Physical Science. Bloom High School, Chicago Heights.
Jill marries her background in biology with her love of kids as a high school science teacher. She teaches and models resilience, encouraging her students’ perseverance and leadership in their community.
Theology, Film, Creative Writing. Fenwick High School, Oak Park.
After 25 years as an entrepreneur, John returned to his first love, teaching. He creates an intimate and safe environment for his students to authentically explore the complex moral questions they face in their worlds.
Art I, Photography I, Advanced Digital Imaging, AP Studio Art 2D Design. Maine West High School, Des Plaines.
Gregory is a teacher and a practicing artist, and he encourages his students to do the same. He goes out of his way to provide them with opportunities to showcase their work in a variety of venues, within and outside of their school. He also models a daily artistic awareness with his “Photo a Day” project on Instagram.
The 28th Annual Golden Apple Awards for Excellence in Teaching is made possible by an endowment from the Pat and Mike Koldyke Family.
And by: Baird, BMO Harris Bank, D219: Niles Township Schools, Ernst and Young, Entertaining Company: Up Market Catering, Fig Catering, McDonald’s, McKinsey & Company, Mrs. Prindables Handmade Confections, Mt. Carmel High School, National Louis University, Northern Trust, The Harbinger Group, and William Blair.
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