Vancouver teacher named region's Teacher of the Year (Photo)
Fort Vancouver High School teacher Bethany Rivard has been named Educational Service District 112 region Teacher of the Year. Rivard is one of nine finalists from around the state for the Washington State Teacher of the Year Award. One teacher will be selected to represent Washington state in the National Teacher of the Year Program.
Rivard teaches English Language Arts at Fort Vancouver High School, a position she has held for the past nine years. She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English Language Arts from Hunter College in New York City and a Master's Degree in Education from Portland State University.
"It's a cliché, but behind every teacher is teacher who inspired them to become an educator," said Rivard, who credits her third grade teacher, Ms. Trainor, with creating a welcoming, safe and creative environment for her students. "Ms. Trainor inspired me to become the type of teacher I am today. I make sure my students know they are valued. I notice them. I make my classroom a safe place where kids feel like they can be themselves. I hope that they feel inspired to engage academically."
Rivard works hard to get to know her students and their individual needs and challenges. Teaching at a school where nearly 80 percent of students qualify for free and reduced lunch and many students speak another language at home, Rivard is especially sensitive to the barriers to success that students face each day.
"An outstanding teacher knows the name and need of their students and maybe stocks their room with extra food and keeps bus passes on hand," said Rivard. "An outstanding teacher listens to and respects the diversity within her classroom. If I know my students well, I can naturally differentiate instruction. My classroom runs well because there is a culture of trust and safety within the walls."
"Bethany is a highly motivated teacher who cares deeply about her students," said Ken Roberts, Associate Principal at Fort Vancouver High School. "She has spent her entire career as an educator finding ways to level the playing field for disadvantaged students, specifically undocumented students and those living in poverty, so that they can reach their highest potential. Bethany has done this through her dedication and amazing work in and out of the classroom."
Students credit Rivard for encouraging them to succeed and pursue their dreams despite obstacles. "Mrs. Rivard believed that every single one of her students were fully capable of doing anything and everything they put their minds to," said former student and George C. Marshall Youth Leadership Award winner Jose Scott. "I know that I speak for many when I say that Mrs. Rivard believed in me more than I have believed in myself at times."
Rivard has collaborated with colleagues to create a contemporary international literature course in Vancouver Public Schools and started a writing club at Fort Vancouver High School. As part of a unit on the Holocaust and genocide, Rivard partnered with the Oregon Jewish Museum to bring in Holocaust survivors as speakers so that her students could witness living history. She also partners with the MEChA de UW, a Latino/a student group from the University of Washington and supported Fort Vancouver students in forming their own MEChA club. As an AVID program teacher, Rivard instigated an early admission process with WSU and as a result, 21 of 34 students in the AVID class were instantly admitted to WSU, as statistic that Fort Vancouver High School had previously never seen.
"What makes Ms. Rivard truly special as a teacher is how she makes students feel safe, valued, and inspired," said McLoughlin Middle School Principal Travis Boeh. "I whole-heartedly believe that Ms. Rivard has changed the course of many of her students' lives. She has an ability to connect with students, make them believe in themselves, and provide them the support and tools to find success in school and beyond."
Rivard is a National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT) in Young Adult/English Language Arts. She is an adjunct professor for Running Start through Central Washington University to offer college credits to her Fort Vancouver students. She also serves as a mentor teacher for Washington State University students during their student teaching experiences.
Rivard will join other nominees from Washington at the state Teacher of the Year Award Ceremony this fall.
ABOUT ESD 112:
Educational Service District 112 enables school districts to concentrate more time, money and energy on student learning. Headquartered in Vancouver, ESD 112 provides local and regional cooperative programs and services to school districts and communities in the six counties of Southwest Washington. ESD 112 was established by the Legislature in 1969 as one of nine regional educational service centers to work in partnership with local communities and school districts to provide support services for student instruction, professional development for
staff, and technical assistance in the administration of schools. The agency offers more than 250 cooperatives and services ranging from interactive telecommunications to the child care network. There are 30 public schools, 23 private schools and two state schools serving 100,000 students and 15,000 school employees who benefit from ESD services.
Election notice for Educational Service District 112 Board of Directors - 08/24/15
The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction has announced the Call of Election Notice for Educational Service District 112 Board of Directors. The election will fill positions 1, 2, 3, 5 and 7 for a four-year term on the ESD 112 Board for beginning January 2016 through January 2020. (Note: District 2 was appointed to fill an unexpired term and shall serve until their successor has been elected at this year's election and has qualified.)
Director District 1 represents Battleground (partial), Green Mountain, Kalama, La Center, Woodland, and Kelso (partial) School Districts. The incumbent is Dr. Richard Graham, whose term expires January 2016.
Director District 2 represents Castle Rock, Kelso (partial), Longview, Naselle-Grays River Valley, Ocean Beach, Toutle Lake, and Wahkiakum School Districts. The incumbent is Rainer Houser, whose term expires January 2018.
Director District 3 represents Battleground (partial), Evergreen (partial) and Hockinson School Districts. The incumbent is Steve Wrightson, whose term expires January 2016.
Director District 5 represents Vancouver Public Schools. The incumbent is Marilyn Koenninger, whose term expires January 2016.
Director District 7 represents Camas, Centerville, Evergreen (partial), Glenwood, Klickitat, Lyle, Mill A, Mt. Pleasant, Roosevelt, Skamania, Stevenson-Carson, Trout Lake, Washougal, White Salmon and Wishram School Districts. The incumbent is Ann Campbell, whose term expires January 2016.
Declaration of Candidacy forms for the position may be obtained from the Administrative Resource Office, Old Capitol Building, P.O. Box 47200, Olympia, Washington, 98504-7200 (360-725-6132/Fax:360-753-4201) or Educational Service District 112-Attention: Terri Tangalin-Piedra, Administrative Assistant to the Board of Directors, 2500 NE 65th Avenue, Vancouver, Washington, 98661 (360-952-3317/Fax:360-750-9706).
Declarations of candidacy and optional biographical data must be filed with the Administrative Resources Office between September 1-16, 2015. Voting by ballot will take place October 1-16, 2015.
To be eligible for membership on an ESD Board, a candidate must be a registered voter and live in the ESD district for which the candidate files. ESD Board members serve a four-year term and are elected by the members of local school boards within each ESD.
ESD 112 is a regional body created by statute to:
* Provide and assist in the development of cooperative services for local school districts and joint purchasing programs for schools within the ESD;
* Act in a consultative and advisory capacity to local school districts;
* Assist the Superintendent of Public Instruction and the State Board of Education in the performance of their respective duties;
* Provide services to the School for the Deaf and School for the Blind to assure equal educational opportunities
OSPI Calling for elections as required by Revised Code of Washington Chapter 28A.310.080
New early learning center to open at former historic Hough Pool - public grand opening and ribbon cutting set August 28
In just a few short days, a new state-of-the-art early learning center in the Hough neighborhood will open its doors to approximately 140 three to five year olds enrolled in the state's Early Childhood Education Assistance Program (ECEAP).
The public Grand Opening of the Hough Early Learning Center, administered by Educational Service District 112, is scheduled for Friday, August 28, 2015 beginning at 10:00 a.m. at 1801 Esther Street in Vancouver. Self-guided tours of the center will follow a short program and official ribbon cutting.
"This is such a significant time in history for young children and families in Clark County and for ESD 112's growing early learning programs," said ESD 112 Superintendent Tim Merlino. "We are so proud to be part of the Hough Foundation's dream of creating a child-centered facility to serve our community's youngest learners," he added.
The project began last fall when ESD 112 first received the news of a $1.1 million ECEAP grant from the Department of Early Learning to serve an additional 108 preschool children in Clark County. (The agency has since funded additional ECEAP slots to ESD 112 to provide learning programs for low income children in Southwest Washington.) "DEL is excited to see the expansion of ECEAP slots at Hough Early Learning Center," said Department of Early Learning (DEL) Director, Dr. Bette Hyde. "With this increase, more children in the Vancouver area will have access to a quality early learning program that will prepare them for kindergarten and beyond," she added.
Vancouver Public Schools will provide hot meals for ECEAP children and share playground space at Hough Elementary. The Hough Foundation will continue to partner with ESD 112 to provide music in the classroom, championed by Hough Foundation Founder Paul Christensen.
ESD 112 purchased the property from the Hough Foundation in July, 2014 for $150,000, and invested another $1.5 million in the renovation project. "We did as much as possible to preserve what was unique to the building," said Merlino. The exposed wooden beams that were part of the pool were retained and water-themed tiles made years ago by Hough Elementary students grace the entryway.
Even with the opening of the new center, Clark County remains underserved when it comes to early learning. There are more than 2,100 local eligible children going unserved. "We will continue to work hard to secure more funding and resources for early learning in our region," Merlino promised.
The public is invited to attend the Grand Opening event and tour the building. Students will begin attending the center on September 10, 2015.