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Taylorsville Journal

West Kearns Elementary teacher recognized with district award

May 06, 2024 02:58PM ● By Dylan Wilcox

Alejandra Arellano was recognized as an Excel wnner. (Granite Education Foundation)

West Kearns Elementary School joins the chorus of celebration as one of their own educators shines brightly among Utah’s finest. Each year, the Granite Education Foundation orchestrates the prestigious Legacy of Leadership and Learning ceremony, a testament to the dedication and impact of educators across the Granite School District.

This year’s event, held at the Excel Evening of Honors, marked a particularly proud moment for West Kearns Elementary. Among the 10 honored individuals was Señora Alejandra Arellano, a teacher whose unwavering commitment to students and innovative teaching methods have left an indelible mark on the school community. Arellano as well as nine other educators out of nearly 2,700 individuals were honored with the award.

Principal Kyle Choffin, beaming with pride, expressed his heartfelt congratulations to the award-winning teacher, emphasizing the significance of this achievement for West Kearns Elementary. 

“We are immensely proud of Alejandra for receiving this prestigious honor,” Choffin said. “It’s a sense of pride. Our teams work very hard together, especially our 3rd grade team. They push each other to help their kids grow. Having Alejandra win this is a point of pride for us.”

Choffin explained that this award signifies the dedication and passion that teachers like Arellano bring to the classroom every single day. This award not only recognizes her individual accomplishments but also highlights the collective excellence of West Kearns Elementary school.

“Looking for teachers who put students first and make sure all our kids are successful in the classroom and this award is specifically for the model teacher that shows what teaching is supposed to look like,” Choffin said.

The Excel Educator Award is not merely a token of appreciation, but a symbol of the profound impact educators have on shaping the future. The rigorous selection process, spanning months of nominations and evaluations, ensures that only the most deserving individuals are recognized for their exceptional contributions to education.

Dr. Rich Nye, the superintendent for Granite School District said this award and the people involved in the Granite Education Foundation are some of the best individuals in education. 

“We are so grateful to the Granite Education Foundation, and our partners, for helping us recognize and appreciate our amazing educators. The impact and influence of an effectual educator should not be taken lightly or for granted. Their impact truly affects generations,” Nye said.

Arellano was overwhelmed and surprised by the announcement. “I thought it was a normal assembly for the school,” she said. “I didn’t know that the gathering was for me. I am deeply humbled by this, and I try to do my best for my kiddos. I enjoy teaching and have a passion for it.”

Recipients of the award are given complimentary tickets to see a Utah Jazz basketball game. As part of the award, teachers are also given a $250 grant to use for their classrooms.

In the spirit of honoring outstanding educators, the Granite Education Foundation encourages community members to participate in the nomination process. Whether it’s recognizing a classroom teacher for their exceptional work or highlighting the achievements of an esteemed administrator, every nomination contributes to the collective appreciation of Utah’s top educators.

“We encourage everyone to nominate educators who exemplify excellence in teaching,” Choffin said. “I think it goes to show what the best of the best are doing. Conversations are made with these teachers to share best practices so other schools and educators can improve.” λ

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