By Per Peterson
Judging from the response he received when accepting his 2019 Teacher of the Year Award at last Thursday’s American Education Banquet, Alex Greenway has no peers in popularity.
A roar of applause from many high school students at last week’s banquet accompanied Greenway as he approached the stage to accept his award.
Greenway was introduced by TAHS student Kathy Vang.
Vang said the students celebrated Thursday have achieved excellence through the help and dedication of the school’s staff.
“Through their lessons and lectures, we not only learn to expand our knowledge, we learn how to become a better version of ourselves,” Vang said. “The 2019 Teacher of the Year is someone who shows passion in what they teach and who cares about his students.”
Vang said Greenway isn’t afraid to tackle new learning experiences with his students and is the type of teacher who takes control during class to get the job done, yet creates a welcoming and comforting atmosphere with sarcasm and humor, while encouraging his students to be their own person.
“Because of his ability to understand his students, he was won over their hearts, which is why we know he will eventually become America’s Sweetheart and reach his goal of being the President of the United States of America. Congratulations to Mr. Alex Greenway.”
• The elementary school’s Teacher of the Year Award went to third-grade teacher Tija Van Gelderen. She was introduced by TAES Student Council President Addison Kainz.
“Mrs. Van Gelderen is a hard worker who puts a lot of time in planning her lessons,” Kainz said. “She shows love and acceptance toward all of her students. She shows a great teamwork attitude, always willing to help her fellow teachers.
Kainz said Van Gelderen is constantly looking for new ways to help her students succeed and said she has always been drawn to public service — through the military, nursing and law enforcement before teaching.
“She loves to see excitement in students’ faces, hearing their stories and watching them grow more than they ever thought possible,” said Kainz. “Congratulations to Tija Van Gelderen, the 2019 Elementary Teacher of the Year.”