Ponoka teachers semi-finalists for prestigious award

Two Ponoka teachers have been nominated for their outstanding teaching and dedication. Catherine Knudskov and Lisa Tidd are semi-finalists for Alberta’s 2008 Excellence in Teaching Award.

Lisa Tidd & Catherine Knudskov

Lisa Tidd & Catherine Knudskov

Two Ponoka teachers have been nominated for their outstanding teaching and dedication. Catherine Knudskov and Lisa Tidd are semi-finalists for Alberta’s 2008 Excellence in Teaching Award.

Knudskov and Tidd were nominated by students and coworkers and the selection committee made up of representatives from the education community for the award focused on specific examples of outstanding teaching and leadership. Each nomination includes a statement of support from the nominee’s principal or superintendent, a teaching colleague and a member of the public.

The criteria focused on areas such as stimulating learning environments, motivating students to exceed their own expectations, attending to individual needs, contributing to a positive school climate and fostering the development of students and their intellectual, social, emotional and physical growth.

As two of the 130 semi-finalists in the province Knudskov and Tidd are able to access up to $1,500 to attend an education conference of their choice and will be honoured and celebrated at a dinner that will be held in Edmonton.

Knudskov has been teaching for 19 years and is currently teaching at Ponoka Alternative Supports School (PASS). She enjoys her job and is excited to be a semi-finalist for this award.

“This program is my dream job and so few people in the world ever get to do their dream job. I put a lot into it but I get more back,” said Knudskov. “There are no words to express how I feel, it’s one of the greatest events of my life. I feel honoured and appreciated, a lot of people did a lot of work to nominate me.”

Although she is eligible for this prestigious award Knudskov is pleased just to be nominated by her coworkers and students.

“I really appreciate all of the work and the good wishes I’ve been receiving since the award went out,” she said. “Really it is the actual nomination that is the important part because I’m recognized by the people who know my work.”

Tidd has been a teacher at St. Augustine School for seven years and has been teaching for eight years. She teaches Grade 8 and 9 and enjoys working with the Intermediate REACH team and her Leadership class organizing a variety of activities. Tidd commutes from Red Deer every day and believes it is worth the drive.

Tidd is pleased to be nominated for this award and appreciates her students and colleagues who nominated her for her work.

“I’m very honoured and humbled a the same time,” said Tidd. “The nomination is due in a large part to the wonderful students that I am able to teach.”

Tidd enjoys working with the staff at St. A’s and appreciates their hard work and dedication to the success of the students and the school.

Tidd believes that being a semi-finalist for the award is a privilege and values the acknowledgment.

“It’s a huge honour,” she said. “It’s really nice to be recognized.”

Knudskov is pleased with what the award represents and that it recognizes teaching and the effort that is put into the students and the school.

“The field of education tends to be a thankless job,” she said. “This is the biggest recognition that can be received. Normally, it’s not understood by the general public the amount of work, dedication and hours that is put into this job. This award recognizes those aspects of our job.”

Alberta Education hosts the Annual Excellence in Teaching Awards with the support of the Alberta School Council’s Association, the Alberta School Boards Association, the Alberta Teacher’s Association, the Edmonton Journal and the SMARTer Kids Foundation.

Since its inception in 1989 over 7,900 teachers have been nominated and more than 400 teachers have received the award.