The more than 900 Hutchinson Public Schools staff members formally began the 2016-17 school year with the annual opening convocation Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016.
During the convocation, Brooke Stover, wellness program supervisor for the Hutchinson Clinic, made a presentation on Adverse Childhood Experiences. An estimated 1 in 4 students has been exposed to trauma. Such experiences can impact a student’s learning.
Also speaking during the opening convocation was motivational speaker Davis Laughlin.
Several educators were honored during the event. The Davis Foundation made its annual Teachers of the Year Awards. The elementary winners were Melissa Law, kindergarten teacher at Morgan Elementary School, and Jenni Winters, third grade teacher at Morgan.
The middle school winner was Tabetha Gray, FACS teacher at Hutchinson Middle School – 7.
The high school winners were Joe Godina, English teacher at Hutchinson High School, and Kelli Lusk, business technology teacher at the Hutchinson Career and Technical Education Academy.
Each winner receives $4,000. The Davis Foundation has contributed millions of dollars to Hutchinson Public Schools’ staff and students since its first scholarships were awarded to HHS seniors 59 years ago. This is the 34th time the awards have been made to teachers.
Other Davis finalists were Bruce Boyd, Theresa Corcoran, Kendall Vogts, Lynnette Krieger Zook and Shandi Webster.
Also recognized during the event were the USD 308 Kansas Teacher of the Year nominees – Candy Lawrence, kindergarten teacher at Graber Elementary School, and Sheila Meggers, math teacher at HHS.
Recognized during the convocation as the Classified Employee of the Year for 2015-16 was Tammy Clark, Support Services secretary for maintenance.
The district also gave Rusty Hilst, longtime calculus teacher at HHS, a standing ovation. Hilst, a graduate of HHS, was honored for his 50 years of teaching and coaching at the school.
Staff will have professional development and room preparation for the 2016-17 school year through Aug. 16. Students in pre-kindergarten through ninth grade return on Aug. 17. High school sophomores through seniors begin the year on Aug. 18.