Teacher Testimonials

Ashley Monteil, HISD 2012 Elementary Teacher of the Year and asecond- and fourth-grade teacher at Lyons Elementary school, on HISD’s commitment to innovation:
“HISD is a district willing to implement innovative programs to affect student outcomes in a positive way. We set high expectations at HISD and we’re concerned with the success of every single student. It’s an exciting time for education right now, in Houston and nationally. If you are passionate about opening doors to kids, I couldn’t think of a greater opportunity.”
Elizabeth Martinez, veteran bilingual teacher at Lantrip Elementary and 2011 National Bilingual Teacher of the Year, on HISD’s commitment to teachers and students:
Teacher of the Year
“HISD cares about its teachers and students. It provides a wide variety of professional development workshops, online support and mentors for new teachers. HISD is our second home, where you feel welcome and appreciated.”
Raquel Sosa-Gonzalez, veteran teacher at Las Americas Newcomer School and a 2012 Houston Rockets and Devon Energy Teacher of the Game, on what keeps her motivated to teach in HISD:
“I have been teaching at Las Americas Newcomer School for six years. I could not ask for a better to school to teach!  I have enjoyed teaching the students as well as learning from them.  I believe every day is a new opportunity to learn and my main goal is to prepare my students to be successful in the rest of their school years and to be life-long learners.”
Andres Balp, veteran teacher at Lyons Elementary and ASPIRE awardee, on HISD’s commitment to teachers and students:
“I believe that HISD is one of the best places in the country to be a teacher. I am proud to be a teacher in HISD because HISD is committed to the success of every child.” 
Shanikia Johnston, fifth-grade reading teacher at Moreno Elementary School, on HISD’s commitment to supporting teachers with regular feedback: 
“Our new appraisal and development systemfocuses on what is fair for all teachers across the board, as far as expectations go, and teachers are judged based on multiple observations. My appraiser has been wonderful. She’s given me a lot of resources. For instance, when I was trying to increase the use of technology in my class, she suggested various websites and programs. These allowed my students to work on vocabulary while reinforcing what I taught earlier in the week.”
Heather Gaines, HISD’s 2011 Elementary Teacher of the Year and the instructional coordinator at Lovett Elementary School, on what makes a great teacher:
“The best teachers continue to learn and grow. They seek out new information and ideas by either consulting with knowledgeable colleagues or attending workshops. They try out what they have learned and share both successes and challenges with colleagues.”
Michael Clark, HISD’s 2011 Secondary Teacher of the Year and veteran AP Government and Economics teacher at Bellaire High School, on his personal commitment to continual improvement:

“Every day, I ask myself a series of questions: ‘Are the students excited about learning? Do they feel like a valued participant in the lesson? Are a variety of strategies and evaluations being used in the instruction?’ I then adapt my style to the changing dynamics of the classroom.”