Tag Archives: Staff Recognition

Alumni Publishes First Novel, Bases Character & Setting on Ladue Schools

Michael Currinder (Ladue Schools Class of ’83) has recently published his first novel for young adults titled Running Full Tilt. Praised by Newbery medal winner Jack Gantos as “a quick read with a kick at the finish,” his novel sensitively and memorably captures a teen runner’s relationship with his older brother who is autistic. The novel is set in Ladue Horton Watkins High School circa 2006, and the Coach Gorsky character is based upon former Ladue Schools track coach legend, Phil Brusca. The American Library Associations Booklist publication recently awarded the novel a starred review stating, “The characterizations are complex and realistic, with sensitively depicted virtues and flaws, evoking empathy and sympathy in the reader. Currinder’s novel is poignant and powerful, with a story that is greater than the sum of its parts.”

Michael ran cross country and track at Ladue Schools, and earned a college athletic scholarship to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His first novel is a hybrid of his collective experiences as a competitive runner and as an adolescent with an autistic sibling. Michael is currently living in Tokyo and is teacher and track and cross country coach at The American School in Japan.

Ladue Middle School Counselor Roger Scherck Recognized with September Excellence in Education Award

Roger Scherck, a counselor at the Ladue Middle School, received the September Excellence in Education Award at the Sept. 25, 2017, Board of Education meeting. Congratulations to Roger on this prestigious recognition!

Roger has worked for the Ladue School District since August of 1994, when he took a position as a high school social studies teacher and soccer coach at Ladue Horton Watkins High School. During his time with the district, Roger has coached boys and girls soccer and track and cross country at the middle school, supported the Learning Center at the high school and taught three years in the Excel program.

Assistant Principal Sarah Adams Schwartz has said, there are few people who contribute more to the Ladue Middle School community than Roger Scherck. Roger offers his time, energy and support to various areas throughout the school and district. He is involved in Character Ed at both the district and building level, as well as in the local community.  He has coached in the 8th grade sports program, as well as coordinated the Middle School Milers running program. He oversees the I Am LMS day program that is put on by the LMS Diversity cadre.

LMS Gaming Educator Talks Game Design in Interviews

Our district’s resident gaming educator, Kathleen Mercury, has had a busy few weeks! Between podcasts and interviews, Kathleen has been able to share what she does and why she teaches her students the art of gaming in the classroom.

Check out one of the more recent stories about Kathleen’s teaching below:

“Teaching game design at this level (middle school) is almost unheard of; it’s why I pursue so many different ways to learn from actual game designers, developers, and publishers in the field,” Kathleen says. “It’s also why I share what I do via my website kathleenmercury.com for free for teachers around the world, so that it’s easier for other game design teachers to get started.”

What else has she been up to?

Kathleen recently participated in a number of sessions as they relate to her 8th grade classes (making siege warfare machines with wood and duct tape, RPG design). “I love innovating and finding new ways to teach and engage students, and I’m excited about what I learned,” she says. And good news: the 8th graders are excited to make pumpkin chunkin’ machines!

Also, in case you weren’t aware, Kathleen has her own game in development! Click here to learn more about this accomplishment!

 

Spoede Educators Share Tips On KSDK On How to Get Students Organized

Thanks to some Ladue Schools educators, KSDK shared tips on how to get your students organized for school! Spoede teacher Jennifer Johnson and retired educator Jan Caimi discussed some classroom-proven tips to make things easier at home. Watch the video and see the tips via KSDK below!

Teachers Participate in Discovery Educator Network’s Institute

Quentin Alimayu, a teacher from Ladue Middle School, and Patricia Brown, an Instructional Technology Coach from Old Bonhomme Elementary, recently joined more than 100 fellow educators from around the world for the 2017 DEN Summer Institute (DENSI), an immersive, week-long professional development experience. The Discovery Educator Network (DEN) connects members across school systems and around the world through social media, virtual conferences, and in-person events, fostering valuable networking, idea sharing, and inspiration. The six-day professional learning experience was held July 16-22 at the University of California, San Diego.

DENSI 2017 featured a number of interactive seminars and hands-on workshops designed to support educators as they combine the latest technologies and digital content to create authentic digital learning environments that engage students and improve achievement. In addition, DENSI provided an opportunity for participants to connect, collaborate, and share resources, ideas and strategies for integrating the latest technologies and digital content into classroom instruction.

KBIA Follows Teachers New to Ladue Schools During Orientation

Check out this story from St. Louis Public Radio about the teachers new to Ladue Schools this year! We’re eager to add their enthusiasm and expertise to our team. 👩🏽‍🏫🍎

STL Public School Guide Lists Reed #2 in Top 20 Elementary Schools in Math

The new Post-Dispatch public school guide compares schools on a variety of issues, including test scores. The guide ranked the 20 local elementary schools with the highest rate of proficiency on statewide tests on math, and Reed Elementary was ranked #2! Statewide, the rate for proficiency in math is 48.6 percent. At Reed, that rate is 80.2%. Check out the list here!

 

English-Language Arts Teacher Kim Gutchewsky Named 2017 Missouri Regional Teacher of the Year

The Ladue School District is proud to announce that Kim Gutchewsky, an English-Language Arts teacher at Ladue Horton Watkins High School, has been named a Missouri Regional Teacher of the Year for the St. Louis region. This coming school year will be Kim’s 24th year of teaching and her 18th year of being an English-Language Arts teacher at Ladue Horton Watkins High School. She was honored at a celebration event hosted by the St. Louis Regional Professional Development Center at Education Plus, 1460 Craig Road, on July 27, 2017. See pictures from the event here!

The Missouri Regional Teacher of the Year award is part of the Missouri Teacher of the Year program, sponsored by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). This program recognizes the efforts of effective teachers in providing a quality education to their students.

“We could not be more proud of Kim for this recognition at the regional level,” high school principal Brad Griffith said. “Kim sees it as part of her role to teach her wide range of students how to navigate their world, to embrace change, constantly evolve and utilize critical thinking. In addition, as chair of the English department, she has been a true teacher-leader, sharing innovative teaching practices, and a willingness to tackle difficult issues. Kim is more than deserving of this award.”

Kim is eligible to compete for the 2017 Missouri Teacher of the Year. The selection committee, comprised of teachers, business leaders and education organization leaders, will choose the Missouri Teacher of the Year following interviews with each finalist this fall. The winner and the finalists will be honored at a banquet in October in Jefferson City. The new Missouri Teacher of the Year will serve as the state’s nominee for the National Teacher of the Year competition.

The Missouri Teacher of the Year program is conducted with financial support by the Boeing Company and the Monsanto Fund.

Ladue Schools Programs Receive 2017 Promising Practices Awards

Several Ladue School District’s schools’ programs were selected as a 2017 National Promising Practice by Character.org! The program highlights what classrooms are doing well across the nation and across the world.

The following school received the award for their programs:

  • Ladue Horton Watkins High School — The Big Brothers and Sisters helping Little Brothers and Sisters Initiative
  • Ladue Horton Watkins High School — Peace Wall
  • Ladue Middle School — “I am LMS” Day
  • Ladue Middle School — “Listening Circles for Equity and Diversity”

Congratulations to everyone who had a part in these deserving programs!

Seniors and High School Staff Finish Another Successful Senior Service Day

Nearly 50 students and eight faculty members (Julia Harrison, Roberta McCaffrey, Drew Crismon, Mike Farrell, Bob Westerholt, Jessica Kennedy, Mary Christine Kubik, and Debra Carson) participated in the annual service day. The groups were all over the place doing great things! They planted 1,050 plants in Forest Park, cleared out honey suckle in Millennium Park, prepped 250 meals at Food Outreach, beautified the grounds at Kingdom House, sorted donations at Back to School Store, and shopped for, cooked and served meals at Gateway 180.
 
Below are some pictures from the day’s activities. The kids worked very hard and had a blast!