MPS Names Whitebird as the 2022 Teacher of the Year During Excellence in Education Ceremony

MOORE, Okla. (April 15, 2022) -- The Moore Public Schools Foundation held its annual Excellence in Education awards ceremony last night at Westmoore High School. Dozens of employees and community partners were recognized as Site-Level Teachers of the Year, the District Finalists for 2022 Teacher of the Year, along with the Patrons of the Year per school site. The awards program was led by Executive Director of the MPSF Clayton Ramick with a welcome by MPS Superintendent Dr. Robert Romines. 

Southmoore High School Teacher Alona Whitebird was named the 2022 District Teacher of the Year. She has taught Social Studies, AP U.S. History, Ethnic Studies and General U.S. History for five years at SHS.

"I became a teacher because I loved how my teachers made me feel; that is where I felt happiest. I've wanted to be a teacher since 5th grade and so when I thought about teaching, I thought about making students feel loved and seen and happy; I wanted to create that in my own classroom," said Whitebird.

She grew up in the MPS system starting in Kindergarten and is a Moore High School graduate. She said getting hired by MPS felt more like a "homecoming" because she was teaching in the same system with the teachers who made her feel good as a student.

Whitebird earned the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History 2021 Oklahoma History Teacher of the Year award in the fall. It was to recognize outstanding instruction and leadership in the field of American History education.  

Sen. Darrell Weaver attended the program to congratulate winners and present printed commendations to each. Jeff Groves of Armstrong Bank - who is also a Westmoore High School graduate - presented Whitebird with a $1,000 scholarship for continued education or professional development. David Stanley Chevrolet was recognized as a new TOY sponsor and they provided $250 to each District TOY finalist and $500 to the winner. The Moore Public Schools Foundation provided the finalists with $500 awards and $1,000 for the winner.

Additionally, South Lake Elementary Nurse Crystal Dickinson, RN was named District Education Support Professional of the Year.  

The National Anthem was performed by WHS students Nathan Aryeequaye and Sarah Thompson and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by WHS Senior Class President Blake Linn.

 

2022 DISTRICT TEACHER OF THE YEAR FINALISTS & VIDEOS

Brink Junior High-Phillip Revolinski: https://youtu.be/GRO8XGYgvVw 

Central Junior High-Jenni Walker: https://youtu.be/lPxs7CEPd98

Heritage Trails Elementary-Ashley Wright: https://youtu.be/H8HoZO4eNJE

South Lake Elementary-Mindy Cowley: https://youtu.be/HVrXXKJEQbc

Southmoore High School-Alona Whitebird: https://youtu.be/rfPzXwpjwKo

 

SITE-LEVEL TEACHER OF THE YEAR

Apple Creek Elementary-Cara Cummings

Briarwood Elementary-Junae Stafford

Brink Junior High-Phillip Revolinski

Broadmoore Elementary-Alicia Wilson

Bryant Elementary-Jennifer Reeves

Central Elementary-Britny Cerda

Central Junior High-Jenni Walker

Earlywine Elementary-McKenzie Benavides

Eastlake Elementary-Shelby Webb

Fairview Elementary-Lauren Steverson

Fisher Elementary-Emily Fraire

Heritage Trails Elementary-Ashley Wright

Highland East Junior High-Shelly Hankins

Highland West Junior High-Terri Chancellor

Houchin Elementary-Natalie Campbell

Kelley Elementary-Jane Salsman

Kingsgate Elementary-Kayleigh Gonzalez

Moore High School-Melissa Wilson

Moore West Junior High-Amy Branch

Northmoor Elementary-Crystal Green

Oakridge Elementary-Kerri Guarnera

Plaza Towers Elementary-Linda Sullivan

Red Oak Elementary-Lisa McAllister

Santa Fe Elementary-Aly Morton

Sky Ranch Elementary-Angela Martinez

Sooner Elementary-Carissa French

South Lake Elementary-Mindy Cowley

Southgate Elementary-Amy Thompson

Southmoore High School-Alona Whitebird

Southridge Junior High-Daniel Woods

Timber Creek Elementary-Marti Minney

Vista Academies-Cindy Farquhar

Wayland Bonds Elementary-Kristen Lassiter

Westmoore High School-Rachel Cerney

Winding Creek Elementary-Bobbi Arrington

 

EDUCATION SUPPORT PROFESSIONAL

ELEMENTARY

Apple Creek- Autumn Gaiski

Briarwood- Maria Segovia

Broadmoore- John Duncan

Bryant- Stephanie Stanfill

Central Elementary- Michelle Cerda

Earlywine- Leanne Weigel

Eastlake- Jennifer Schwab

Fairview- Jill Wilson

Fisher- Melissa Boyd

Heritage Trails- Nancy Resendiz

Houchin- Helga Brumley

Kelley- Traci Wolfe

Kingsgate- Sandra Magerus

Northmoor- Sheila Robinson

Oakridge- Felicia Stoker

Plaza Towers- Nicki Willis

Red Oak- Nassil Al Adhami

Santa Fe- Susan Dozal

Sky Ranch- Pamela Buchanan

Sooner- Cynthia Kuminski

Southgate- Amanda Beaver

South Lake- Crystal Dickinson, RN  https://youtu.be/iiyUWnwvbtc

Timber Creek- Shanda Sharum

Wayland Bonds- Theresa Cox

Winding Creek- Michel Littlefield

 

JUNIOR HIGH

Brink- Monica Valles

Central Jr High- Teresa Assell

Highland East- Kayla Hyden

Highland West- Jasmine Handley

Southridge- Paula Gonzalez

Moore West - LaDonna Cobb

 

HIGH SCHOOL

Moore- Alma Wilkins

Southmoore- Anita Kuchera

Westmoore- Dalia Trevino

DEPARTMENTS

ASC- Jessica Deck

Child Nutrition- Amanda Belden

Maintenance- Kimberly Moore

Technology- Kenny Sifford

Transportation- Dwayne Mathews

Warehouse- Dallas Warren

Vista- Jessica Guillen

 

PATRONS OF THE YEAR

Apple Creek – Sarah Butler

Bonds – Danielle Goodrich

Briarwood – Jennifer Brammer

Brink – Jonathan and Brittany Cramer

Broadmoore – Tasha Enix

Bryant – Amber Barthel

Central Elementary – Pastor Jermaine Vaughn and Elevate Church

Central Junior High – Tierney McDonald

Earlywine – Tricia McGuire

Eastlake – Cherree Adkison

Fairview – Sherry McClendon

Fisher – Cheri Bedford

Heritage Trails – Natalie Baker

Highland East – Julie Gardner

Highland West – Kelly Cottrell

Houchin – Crossroads Church

Kelley – Samantha Burton

Kingsgate – Carolyn West

Moore High School – Erin Morrison

Northmoor – Libby Lee

Oakridge – Julie Smith

Plaza Towers – Katherine La

Red Oak – Courtney Fincher

Santa Fe – Amber James

Sky Ranch – Anne Morales

Sooner – Cheryl Anders

South Lake – Karen Moore

Southgate – Erin Gibson

Southmoore – Jeff Preske

Southridge – Sabrina Fish

Timber Creek – Mallory Berkinshaw

VISTA – John Fitzgerald

Moore West – Cathy Adams

Westmoore – Mary Foster

Winding Creek – Kristen Bolding

Each year in September, each school selects its site-level Teacher of the Year. Each site-level TOY is then invited to complete Part One of the District TOY application during October & November. In early December, the teachers who are members of the district's Professional Development Committee use a rubric to score the submitted applications. Five finalists for District TOY are announced just prior to Winter Break.

The finalists then complete Part Two of the District TOY application by February. In March, the PD Committee scores the complete applications. In April, the winner of the MPS District Teacher of the Year is announced at the annual Excellence in Education ceremony which also honors the accomplishments of each site-level TOY and the five finalists for District TOY.

To learn more about the MPS Foundation, visit mooreschoolsfoundation.org. For information about Armstrong Bank visit armstrong.bank. For photos of all the 2022 Site Level Teachers of the year visit here.