City of Fort Collins Commission on Disability’s Community Recognition Awards (formerly Mayor’s Awards) – to be presented Thursday, October 18.

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Dear Integrated Services Staff, PSD Staff, and Community Members,

Each year, the City of Fort Collins Commission on Disability presents their Community Recognition Awards (formerly Mayor’s Awards). Being a nominee or recipient is a great honor and something that should bring much pride. This year, we have several individuals/ groups who have been nominated or are recipients and will be honored this Thursday, October 18 at CSU’s Lory Student Center. They are as follows:

Nominees:
Pam Scroggins (Special Education Teacher, Lesher Middle School)
nominated for Educator of the Year
Jonette Dixon (Teacher, Lesher Middle School)
nominated for Educator of the Year
Heather Howe (Special Education Paraprofessional II, Lesher Middle School)
nominated for Educator of the Year
Amy Cesar (Special Education Teacher, Preston Middle School)
nominated for Educator of the Year
Tara Gross (Special Education Teacher, Rocky Mountain High School)
nominated for Educator of the Year
Jessica Peacock (Special Education Teacher, Olander Elementary School)
nominated for Employee of the Year

Recipients:
Tara Gross (Special Education Teacher, Rocky Mountain High School)
Educator of the Year
April Tauer (Special Education Teacher, Bennett Elementary School)
Employee of the Year
Gayna Jobe (Integrated Services Program Specialist, Cooper Home)
Service Provider of the Year
Olander School for Project Based Learning
Spirit of Fort Collins Award

Congratulations to all!

Sarah
Sarah Belleau
Director
Integrated Services
Poudre School District
970-490-3094

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In recognition of National Physical Therapy Month; a note from PSD Integrated Services Director Sarah Belleau

This is National Physical Therapy month, and an opportunity to celebrate our three highly skilled school-based Physical Therapists doing a great job serving our students with disabilities.  Anna Siliciano, Nancy Miller, and Rachel Collier are highly committed to assuring that the needs of students they serve are met and I hope that you will take a moment this month to celebrate them and their work on your teams and in your schools.

For informational purposes, the school-based Physical Therapist (PT) promotes motor development and the student’s participation in everyday routines and activities that are a part of his or her program.  PTs design and perform therapeutic interventions including compensation, remediation and prevention strategies and adaptations;  focusing on functional mobility and safe, efficient access and participation in educational activities and routines in natural learning environments.

We are thankful for our great PTs and celebrate them during October!

Sarah

Sarah Belleau
Director
Integrated Services
Poudre School District
970-490-3094

 

Congratulations to our staff who were nominated by their colleagues in recognition of the amazing work they do on behalf of students with disabilities in PSD!

The following staff members were recognized at the Integrated Services Quarterly Meeting on Monday, September 24, 2018.

Andrea Chacon, Early Childhood Special Education Teacher, Harris Bilingual
(Nominated by Krystal Rodriguez, ECH Teacher)

  • “Without obligation or necessity, Andrea taught me how to manage the most chaotic of situations with grace and patience. Her compassion towards students, of all needs and capabilities, lightens a room and positively influences those around her. Students ask over and over to hear her stories, as she fills the class with laughter and pure joy, just by listening and homing in on the imaginative mind of a preschooler.”
  • “Andrea takes time to engage with each individual child and build a bond that enhances their ability to participate in the classroom. She is an amazing role model for both students and teachers, using her humor and compassion to create a welcoming and loving environment for all. Knowing Andrea, she will probably hide behind her humble soul in accepting this award, but she deserves all the praise and respect for the 21 years she has dedicated to such wonderful little scientists.”
  • “Her dedication to Early Childhood has created a generation of generous, kind, and creative individuals, who frequently stop her on the street to thank her for her kindness. This time, I thank you Andrea, for all the exceptional work you do!”

Tom Drungil, Special Education Paraprofessional II, Fort Collins High School
(Nominated by Colleen Reyes, Speech-Language Pathologist)

  • “Tom has worked at Fort Collins High School for the last 8 years.  He spent his first few years working in the Autism program establishing rapport with students and teachers all over the school.  He welcomed each student with a smile and worked to achieve growth with the students both academically and vocationally.”
  • “After a few years, Tom was given the opportunity to work in a more integrated setting with students ranging in eligibility of SLD to SIED and the transition was incredibly smooth!  The teachers and staff members viewed him as a valuable addition to the teaching team.  Again, Tom easily established relationships with students and collaborated well with teachers.”
  • “This year, Tom has stepped back into the center-based ILS and Autism programs as part of a shift at the school.  There was no transition needed, as he has become a master at FCHS.  We are so grateful to have him as part of the team and extremely lucky to know he is here to support students and teaching staff. Thank you, Tom, for all you do.”

Tara Gross, Special Education Teacher, Rocky Mountain High School
(Nominated by Melanie Potyondy, School Psychologist)

  • “Tara has been instrumental in guiding our department through a variety of difficult cultural and procedural changes over the course of the last two years, and she has weathered the inevitable stresses of change with grace and positivity. She is a trusted confidant throughout the department. Colleagues can always count on Tara to remain empathic, productive, and solution-oriented.”
  • “Tara is constantly searching out new ways to engage students who face the most difficult challenges, especially those who are on the precipice of giving up on school. She has taken it upon herself to pursue and build multiple innovative options throughout the school district and community to provide disengaged students with hope for their futures and tangible skills that might propel them into the workforce. Through collaboration with SWAP and ACE, Tara has carved out a niche for a population of kids who might otherwise turn away from public education. Because she is never willing to give up on these students, Tara has been successful in giving them a spark to move toward their best futures.”
  • “She is kind, warm, funny, and real. Most importantly, she gets things done, and our students reap the benefits. Tara makes Poudre Schools and Rocky Mountain High School a better place.”

Andy Meyer, Special Education Teacher, Rocky Mountain High School
(Nominated by Brad Reimers, School Psychologist & the RMHS IS Team)

  • “During the past two years, he has led the way in establishing and implementing our “Fusion” model of co-teaching at Rocky. At a school as large as ours, this has been a significant undertaking. Andy held multiple lunch meetings last year to begin this process and to build enthusiasm and support for Fusion. This year, he has remained diligent in individually working with teachers to ensure a successful rollout of Fusion. It has been wonderful to see the early results for our students at Rocky. Our students and staff have both been energized by this collaborative approach to education.”
  • “Andy is an enthusiastic and passionate teacher. He is a tireless advocate who quickly builds deep connections with his students. Andy is willing to implement new approaches to teaching and is reflective on how to best engage students from diverse backgrounds. He considers the entire student and finds innovative ways to make school a positive experience for our students. Outside of his traditional roles as a teacher, Andy is a visible member of the Rocky community, volunteering his time to two student clubs. Finally, Andy is a connected member of our Integrated Services team. His sense of humor, positive and calm demeanor, and solutions-oriented approach are much appreciated by our team. Our students and staff are fortunate to work alongside an educator like Andy Meyer.”

Thank you, Andrea, Tom, Tara, and Andy for your service and dedication to ALL students in PSD!

Unified Flag Football – Starts Tonight!! French Field – Poudre vs Loveland 6:00 P.M. – Rocky vs Fossil 7:00 P.M.

Come out for a fun evening of Unified Flag Football (including Unified spirit lines).  If you have never come to a Unified game, this is your chance to join the fun!  Unbridled athleticism, team spirit, and camaraderie abound – on the field and off.  If your student is interested in participating in Unified Sports, check with your school athletics office to see if they have an available program.  Here are a few pics of last year’s season.