Plano Independent School District has announced the 2015 Teachers of the Year. The elementary teacher of the year went to Barron Elementary School fifth grade team leader Lilli Wisler. The secondary teacher of the year was awarded to Wilson Middle School academic specialist and teacher Jennifer Denton.
The Excellence in Elementary Teaching awardees were Jacob Bartok from Meadows Elementary School, Andrea Jaramillo from Forman Elementary School, Nicole Moreno from Davis Elementary School and Winnie Reuter from Miller Elementary School.
The Excellence in Secondary Teaching awardees were Erica Pasvar from Robinson Middle School, Tina Pilgrim from Murphy Middle School, Jerry Pruett from Vies High School and Kristin Rosi from Shepton high School.
Pilgrim, a sixth grade teacher and the science department head, was the lone winner from Murphy to achieve an excellence in teaching.
Pilgrim has taught at Murphy Middle School for 12 years. She serves on the School Based Improvement Committee and Environment Club Sponsor.
“Tina’s influence and inspiration expand far beyond the hours of the school day and the walls of our building as she tirelessly and boldly leads the MMS Environmental Club,” Brant Perry, Murphy Middle School principal, said in his recommendation letter. “Tina truly has a passion for science and for students, and she approaches every day as a beautiful new opportunity to help kids make discoveries. Five minutes in her classroom is never enough, and I often find myself hanging around to see what happens next. She is gifted in the art of teaching, and she has never rested on her laurels; she hones her craft to become better every year.”
Pilgrim’s teaching philosophy is to stress the importance of understanding the subject matter. Pilgrim rates the success of a lesson on whether or not students can demonstrate and apply the information learned into their life experiences.