April 26

Jake Sigafus, Viewpoint Middle; teacher

“Mr. Sigafus is ALWAYS positive. He is open and honest with all his students. When he has an issue he will tell the class what he thinks isn’t going well and we are all able to fix it. He got his thumb chopped off and he still came to school with a smile on his face. His class is the most fun but I am also able to learn. He teaches in many different styles so that everyone can learn.

Nominated by: Spencer Tingey, student

Ashley Becar, Pony Express Elementary; teacher

Ashley is the best teacher I have ever had the privilege of working with. She puts her whole heart and soul into teaching, and the amount of growth the students show because of the quality of her instruction feels a little bit like magic. She is always researching and innovating, finding new ways to engage students and make them feel safe and loved. Her students are so lucky to have her as a teacher!

Nominated by: Stephanie Edwards, district employee

Allison Ing, Sage Hills Elementary; teacher

Even though it was her first year of teaching, she made 6th grade fun for us. Ms. Ing always made sure we understood anything and explained really well if we had any questions. She was a fun teacher and had amazing ways to teach that were engaging and me learn a lot better.

Nominated by: Sadie Johnson, student

Jennifer Jenkins, Vista Heights Middle; teacher

Mrs. Jenkins is the absolute best, she is a prime example of an amazing teacher. Her teaching style and the resources she uses make the perfect classroom environment. She teaches so many various classes, and I’ve had the opportunity to see her work from behind-the-scenes and it seriously amazes me. She is easily one of my favorite teachers and I can’t think of a single student who would disagree with me. I look forward to her class next year and I can’t wait for what she has to teach me.

Nominated by: Sophie Tehvand, student

Amanda Childs, Skyridge High; teacher

Because she makes sure everyone gets help and she works hard teaching all of us. She is just an amazing teacher who is really great at English. Her teaching makes it fun and great to understand.

Nominated by: Kaylee Sweeting, student

Kaliann Vander Wilt, Thunder Ridge Elementary; teacher

Teaching fits perfectly on Mrs. Vander Wilt. New to the game, she is first string already!! Every child feels her love, creativity and constant encouragement! Her students truly love her. We are lucky to have her at our school!

Nominated by: Tara Bell, parent

Michael Visker, American Fork Junior; teacher

Mr. Visker is an amazing English teacher! He’s funny, kind and is very helpful! I look forward to my A4 classes at the end of the day. He always makes English fun even if the subject isn’t very exciting. He encourages us to use dictionary’s, thesaurus and other sources for our school work. He hardly gives out homework and when he does it’s a really fun project! Like we do book of the terms, we get to write funny memoirs and so much more! Mr. Visker absolutely has to be one of my top 3 favorite teachers! :)

Nominated by: Emoani Willing, student

Ranae Barker, Mountain Ridge Junior; teacher

I think that Ms. Barker should be nominated for the RISE award, because of the way she teaches. She is so kind to everyone and treats us like we are her own. She wants everyone to succeed even if they aren’t her students. She makes everybody feel loved, and is the best math teacher I’ve ever had!

Nominated by: Maddie Stokes, student

Renae does an excellent job engaging her students in meaningful mathematics. She launches students into rich problems and then monitors their work and peer collaboration and then selects students to share with the whole class where connections are made. Renae supports students through great questions that promote deep engagement. We are so glad she is a teacher in our district!”

Nominated by: Travis Lemon, district employee

Brad Leavitt, Frontier Middle; teacher

He is a nice and good teacher and he is the best.

Nominated by: Xander Petersen, student

Derek Smith, American Fork Junior; teacher

He has literally changed the lives of so many students by showing them that they are worthy and capable enough to make the world better. He has inspired everyone around him through example, love, dignity, humor, and all other honorable attributes that life is about learning and growing. He is the best teacher out of my ENTIRE school experience. He has shown genuine affection for his students and is a perfect example of a remarkable, inspiring, selfless, and encouraging person in and out of the school building.”

Nominated by: Sienna Crenshaw, student

“He is a super great teacher, he always gives you the best tools to do good on your work and he is very understanding. He makes lessons fun while still keeping it school worthy and we still learn. Best teacher I’ve had this year.

Nominated by: Paisley Nabrotzky, student

Jenna Payne, Orchard Elementary; teacher

Mrs. Payne is dedicated to helping each and every student excel in all aspects of her classroom. She makes everyone feel so special and important. She My son told me “Mom, you are the best for giving me a teacher who is so nice! I really like her.” She recognized early in the school year that my son was struggling finding a friend. Another little boy also was having a hard time finding a friend. These little boys are now great friends! My son has many friends now. I also love the “at home” ideas she sends home for me to help my son with his school work. All around fantastic! Thank you!!!

Nominated by: Jana Rands, parent

Rachel Spencer, Sego Lily Elementary; teacher

Rachel Spencer is a wonderful kindergarten teacher! She sets high expectations for her students then provides excellent instruction to meet those expectations. She understands their strengths and nurtures them in a way to reach their goals. When I have visited her classroom it is so organized, and the kindergartners are excellent at following directions. Lastly, she has helped to spark the joy of reading for my daughter!

Nominated by: Danielle Dahl, parent

Scott Gonsalves, Lindon Elementary; administrator

El es muy amable en ayudar y responder a preguntas que uno tiene. En mi caso, el a brindado tiempo y respuestas a las habilidades de la escuela para resolver y atender las necesidades especiales con mis hijos. Siempre está disponible para atender, es muy cordial, respetuoso y muy colaborador en la escuela con los alumnos.”

(He is very kind to help and answer questions that one has. In my case, he has provided time and responses to the school’s abilities to resolve and address special needs with my children. He is always available to help, he is very cordial, respectful and very cooperative at school with the students.)

Nominated by: Soroya Farias, parent

Jamie Ingersoll, Skyridge High; teacher

The first time I saw Mrs Ingersoll teach, I was actually doing observations for another class. I immediately knew I wanted to take a class from her because of the energy she puts into her teaching. She’s the best at giving lectures, and is good at explaining, not just defining, content. She’s also good at connecting content to the real world. I took AP Psychology from her and it was one of my all-time favorite classes because she taught it so well.”

Nominated by: Megan Robinson, student

April Hunt, North Point Elementary; teacher

Mrs. Hunt is an awesome teacher. She cares so much about us and always has our backs. She is the most fabulously amazing teacher you could ever have. She gives us fun activities to do during school. She is so great and I love her!!!!!!!

Nominated by: Nellie Felt, student

Benjamin Test, Westlake High; teacher

Mr. Test is a great teacher and friend to so many of us students here at Westlake. He is one of the most patient and selfless people I know. His classroom is made to be a space where people can be themselves, and Mr. Test is a huge part of that. Mr. Test gives his time, energy and sanity for us to participate in the Esports club, which he alone manages. He also lets us in his classroom during lunch so we can play games with our friends. Throughout the many many times we get too loud and hyped, He has stayed patient. Nothing science has yet discovered explains how Mr. Test can be so awesome!

Nominated by: Cyrus Ottey, student

Kali Schauerhamer, Silver Lake Elementary; teacher

What’s not to like about Mrs. Schauerhamer?! My son has loved her and so have we! She really, truly cares about each of her students and is so proud of them! It really shows every time I have seen her interact with the students! Our son has learned a lot this year and is happy to go to school everyday! She’s reliable, kind, really cool (my 5th grader told me so- and that’s a big deal), she listens to your questions and concerns and truly wants each student to thrive and succeed! We feel so lucky to have her for our teacher! Thank you, Mrs. Schauerhamer!! We love you and appreciate you!!

Nominated by: Brittney Harward, parent

Christi Cox, Silver Lake Elementary; teacher

Our son has loved being in Ms. Cox’s class this year!! He has learned so much and enjoys going to school everyday! She is sweet and soft spoken and she is really proud of her students! It brings me comfort sending our son to school everyday knowing he’s in good hands! Thank you, Ms. Cox!! We appreciate all you do!!”

Nominated by: Brittney Harward, parent

Daniel Clegg, Canyon View Junior; teacher

Mr. Clegg my choir teacher is an amazing teacher and he is deserving of the RISE Award because he is selfless among other remarkable traits. He comes to work every day unless he is too sick and fights to come either way. He always has a cheerful attitude and unlike a few teachers I have met, he cares deeply about the students and wants them to succeed. He helps each student and makes them feel a valued member of the class. Mr. Clegg pushes us to be the very best we can be. I think Mr. Clegg is the most deserving lf the Rise Award.

Nominated by: Marianne Wagstaff, student

Eric Spencer, American Fork High; teacher

Mr. Spencer is undoubtedly one of the best teachers in the school. I genuinely believe he embodies every part of RISE: Remarkable, Inspiring, Selfless, and Encouraging. Mr. Spencer doesn’t care for busy work, or just teaching for the allotted time he needs to get paid. What he truly cares about is helping each individual student be the best version of themselves, giving back to the community, and preparing us for real life. Every time I leave his class, I leave excited to work on being the best me that I can be and to serve those around me.

Nominated by: Maddie Pulley, student

Mr. Spencer is an absolutely passionate teacher and he really knows how to get his students to be passionate about what he teaches as well! Having been a wrestling coach for many years, and teaching the principles of mindset, he knows how teenagers think and what they need to get motivated. He also is a phenomenal leader and fully understands the principles of what it takes to be a good leader. More than this, he relates very well to the students and has a particular humor that compliments his teaching. Mr. Spencer is very deserving of the RISE Award!”

Nominated by: Tyson Rawlings, student

Jeff Young, Eaglecrest Elementary; teacher

Mr. Young has taught several of my children. He is amazing. He breaks big ideas and projects down into smaller pieces allowing for greater success and kids’ confidence. Whether my child has been a straight A student or hates school and struggles with ADHD, Mr. Young helps them rise. He notices social struggles or other challenges and makes an effort to help them inside and out of his classroom. He goes the extra mile remembering siblings names and life events. I know he puts in a lot of extra time beyond what is required. I appreciate his inspiring and remarkable work as a teacher.

Nominated by: Rachel Freeman, parent

Griffin Dean, American Fork Junior; teacher

He is the best German teacher.

Nominated by: Nathan Kunze, student

Amber Mattingly, Black Ridge Elementary; aide

Amber has the best relationship with students at Black Ridge. She works in the lunchroom and deals with all sorts of craziness but she treats all the students with love and respect. She genuinely cares about everyone and goes above and beyond in her Aide and PTA duties.

Nominated by: Colleen Guerrero, district employee

Lance Major, American Fork Junior; teacher

I’ve never seen anybody so committed to his job, but also kind, and hardworking. He’s a music teacher, but he seems like he teaches more than just notes on a page, but how to teach music fully. I personally think he is responsible for the massive success of the American Fork band program. He’s always ready for class, and never is let or less than he wants himself to be. Mr. Major continues to push us to be better as musicians, but also better people.

Nominated by: Luke Anderson, student

Rebecca Williams-Wood, American Fork High; teacher

Mrs. Williams-Wood always comes to class engaged. She wears outfits that correspond with our curriculum and shares fun media that makes it easy to remember information. It’s easy to feel excited learning about the government when your teacher is very well versed in the subject and can answer every question. She encourages us to always do our best and to positively accept constructive criticism. I know she wants the best for all of us because she’s flexible with our needs and caters to everyone’s beliefs. I look forward to her class every day.

Nominated by: Brianna Heaton, student

Terri Goff, Highland Elementary; hearing specialist

Terri is so responsive and helpful with my son’s hearing loss needs. He requires an FM System for his bilateral cochlear implants, and there have been numerous times it has malfunctioned and I just text Terri and she or her assistant are there the same day to help resolve issues. She is on top of the equipment and the technology. She wants to make sure, as I do, that my son has access to sound every minute of every day. I’m so grateful for good people who make a difference in my kids lives.”

Nominated by: Nancy Zundel, parent

Tami Galbraith, Springside Elementary; teacher

My son is in Mrs. Galbraith’s 1st grade class. He is a struggling reader. She has set up tutoring with him and many of the other students who are struggling 3 times a week in her own morning prep time. As a previous teacher I know the extra work and effort this kind of help takes. He is learning and growing and I am so grateful to her diligent and hard work. I want teachers like her who put in the extra time and effort for our kids, to be rewarded. She is a gem and should be recognized for all she does.

Nominated by: Robin Handy, parent

Stephanie Gladwin-Park, American Fork High; teacher

She always seems to bring a smile to every single one of her students. Everyone I have met that takes one of her classes just loves her so much. Even when she’s sick she makes the time of day for us and even when she’s mad she still seems to look at us with a smile on her face. She’s not only taught us about History but she has taught us how to be happy when coming to class, how to actually like learning, and many more things. She is one of the best teachers ever and anyone that knows her will agree.

Nominated by: Nyliah Alafaio, student

She’s great and always there for all students and she has food for days when I haven’t eaten and she’s so funny and kinda and just amazing at teaching us.”

Nominated by: Dottie Davis, student

Carl Johanson, Willowcreek Middle; teacher

He is the best teacher ever. He cares so much. He loves every single student. He’s patient. He’s kind. He makes everyone feel important and talented. He sacrifices so much for his students.

Nominated by: Ezra Westwood, student

Tina Sterzer, Black Ridge Elementary; teacher

Mrs. Sterzer has made an enormous impact on my son this year. She has gone above and beyond in her efforts to find creative new solutions for the things that are difficult for him. She communicates with me consistently and has really made us all a team in helping my son find his success. It is obvious that Mrs. Sterzer cares deeply about her students, their learning, and their future success after they leave her classroom. We feel so lucky for the positive influence she has been in the life of my son and truly our whole family.

Nominated by: Jennifer Reynolds, parent



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