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Distinguished Educators 2013-2014

June 2014 - Travis Godkin

Friday the Distinguished Educator committee awarded Travis Godkin, Biology teacher atDallas High School the Distinguished Educator Award for June.


Mr. Godkin was nominated by Tony Olliff and the entire DHS Science Department. They shared these comments about Mr. Godkin:


  • Even though Travis knew his stay would be brief, he was intent on leaving this place better than he found it

  • He shaped the classes he taught, adding rigor, emphasizing writing and technology

  • He used his perspective and connections at the University level to point students in the direction of higher education

  • Of equal importance, Travis trained his colleagues

  • He has left DHS better than he found it!


Here is what other students had to say about Mr. Godkin:


  • I love the way Mr. Godkin teaches

  • He makes learning fun

  • I love that he can be sarcastic with us

  • He’s freakin’ awesome Mr. Godkin is extremely patient


Mr. Godkin is leaving Dallas High School and moving to New York with his family. Travis’ wife has accepted a tenure track positions at a University in New York and they will be closer to family.


Please join us in congratulating Travis and expressing our appreciation for the work he did in our district and for our students.




May 2014 - Kellie Ackerman


Friday, Kellie Ackerman, 4th grade teacher at Whitworth Elementary School was presentedwith the Distinguished Educator Award for May in a school-wide assembly.


Her nominator Benjamin Nelson was a student in her classroom last year, here are some of the comments he shared about Mrs. Ackerman:


  • It felt good to be in her classroom

  • She makes learning fun and has a good relationship with her kids

  • She is a really great teacher

  • She has a fun personality

  • She has games and hands on activities that you really learn from and stay in your head

  • If you don’t tell anybody, I kind of didn’t mind going to school when I was in her class because she made it fun

  • She makes us feel valued and important and cares about her students

  • Her discipline made it peaceful and actually a lot easier to do work

  • She was very strict but also very understanding


Here is what other students had to say about Mrs. Ackerman:


  • Mrs. Ackerman is really awesome, she was my first Whitworth teacher

  • If we are stuck on a problem, Mrs. Ackerman helps us out

  • She doesn’t shout as us, she just helps us

  • She does Accelerated Reader points for the whole school

  • She takes us to Astoria for our field trip

  • Mrs. Ackerman is really nice

  • She is always happy to help

  • She is hilarious

  • She always helps us understand our problems

  • She isn’t afraid to help kids

  • Mrs. Ackerman is an awesome science teacher

  • She takes time out of her day to help

  • She doesn’t give up on us


Please join us in congratulating Kellie! Another amazing educator in Dallas School District!



April 2014 - Mark Hess

Friday Mark Hess, Alt Ed and PE teacher at LaCreole Middle School was presented with the Distinguished Educator Award for April in a school-wide assembly.


His nominator Julie Janssen works with him at LaCreole, here are some of the comments she shared about Mr. Hess:


  • I am amazed at the patience and love he shows his students

  • He gives his job his all and never complains

  • He takes the time to get to know students

  • He motivates the unmotivated

  • He goes beyond the normal parameters of what is expected of a teacher

  • Mark makes kids smile and laugh, it is a joy to watch him interact with his students

  • Mark encourages, motivates, and diligently prepares for his classes to give students the best he has to offer every day


Here is what other students had to say about Mr. Hess:


  • He is nice but also strict when he needs to be.

  • Mr. Hess always tells really good jokes.

  • He always hangs out with us at recess.

  • He is the definition of swag!

  • Mr. Hess is an awesome PE teacher and really nice to all of us.


 Please join us in congratulating Mark he is an awesome educator and great colleague to many of us!



February 2014 - Tracy Jackson

Today, Tracy Jackson, PE  teacher and head football coach at Dallas High School waspresented with the Distinguished Educator Award for January.


His nominators Ryan Spencer and Caleb Naughton, were coached by Mr. Jackson for the past two years. Here are some of the comments they shared about Coach Jackson:


  • I have been able to learn and grow because of the life lessons he has taught me and the        example he has shown me.

  • He taught us how to be men.

  • He taught us how to apply ourselves on the field, but also in school, at home, and with our relationships.

  • As  much as he cared for a win on Friday night, he cared more for a win in our life and in our schooling.

  • Mr. Jackson is more than deserving of the distinguished educator award. He has been a blessing in my life as well as many others.

  • He has succeeded in his goal of making us champions on the field as well as in life!

  • He has outstanding dedication and talent in developing the emotional well-being of his football team.

  • He always stressed, “family first”. Coach Jackson made it clear that the goal and priority for us was to be the best men we could possibly be; men who would grow to be great husbands and fathers.

  • Through his genuine interest in us, we were able to come together as a team.

  • He always taught by example, through his positive interactions with his sons.


Here is what other students had to say about Mr. Jackson:


  • Mr. Jackson makes stuff fun for us.

  • He isn’t afraid to call us out when we do something wrong.

  • He cares about the students and players.

  • As a student teacher, I appreciate how willing Tracy is to share his classroom with me.

  • We need to exercise a LOT!

  • Mr. Jackson cares more about a win in our lives than on the field.

  • He has taught us that family comes first.



Please join us in congratulating Tracy!  He is awesome in the classroom and on the field and is an exceptional role model for all of our students.


December 2013 - Theresa Lehman

Today, Theresa Lehman, 2nd grade teacher at Oakdale Heights Elementary School was presented with the Distinguished Educator Award for December by her former students Heather Ebner.


After presenting her roses, Heather shared the following regarding Ms. Lehman:

She is the best second grade teacher for these three reasons:


  • First, she teaches us lots of fun subjects, she makes math very interesting, helps us to understand what we read, and also teaches us how to write about the Patricia Gallagher books.

  • Second, she is a very nice teacher, she always supports and encourages us to do our best. She cares about us.

  • Third, she makes school very fun every single day.


Here’s what her other students had to say about her when asked “What makes her an awesome teacher?”:


  • Miss Lehman is funny!·        

  • She is the best teacher on earth!        

  • Because she never leaves us behind.        

  • She is a little crazy.        

  • She teaches us a lot and is really helpful.        

  • Miss Lehman doesn’t give us hard homework.        

  • She learns us very well.        

  • She is fun, nice, and sweet!


Please join us in congratulating Theresa!

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