Friday, March 27, 2009

Castillo Is Arlington Teacher of Year

The Kenmore Middle School 6th Grade teacher wins kudos county-wide. Christine B. Taylor wins top spot at Swanson Middle School.


Kenmore Middle School sixth grade science teacher Elizabeth H. Castillo has been named the Arlington Public Schools 2009 Teacher of the Year. Castillo has been with APS for 28 years and at Kenmore for 18 years, an APS press release reported.

“Elizabeth’s hands-on approach to learning opens students’ minds to new concepts and ideas. She is a role model to students as well as her peers,” said Superintendent Dr. Robert Smith in the release. “Liz has been shaping students in Arlington for almost 30 years. I congratulate her on this well-deserved recognition.”

Castillo began her career in Arlington as a substitute teacher in 1977. She received her bachelor's and master's degrees at Virginia Tech.

“Liz treats each child as a unique individual and knows her students well. She presents a quiet enthusiasm and thorough commitment to connect with all students,” said Kenmore principal Dr. John Word in the press release.

Several years ago, Castillo started the Earth Force green program which involved students testing and making recommendations about how to clean up the Potomac River watershed.

As a result of her initiatives, Kenmore was named the Capital Region Earth Force School of the Year and Staples Earth Force School of the Year for 2008-09.

Castillo’s students also had high praise for their teacher. “Not only did Mrs. Castillo do everything she could to help me succeed and earn the grade I wanted, but she was vibrant and nice to everyone,” said Kenmore student Samantha Tigner in the release.

According to the release, Castillo will serve as the school system’s nominee for the 2009 Virginia Teacher of the Year, and is one of 21 metropolitan D.C. area teachers who will be honored on May 12 at The Washington Post as part of the annual Agnes Meyer Outstanding Teacher Awards sponsored by The Post Company’s Educational Foundation.

The Arlington School Board will recognize Castillo and the 29 other APS teachers who were named “Teacher of the Year” for their individual schools. The Teacher of the Year reception and recognition program will be held on May 20 at 7p.m. at the Education Center. The program will be aired on Comcast Cable Channel 70 and Verizon FiOS 41 beginning at 7:30.

The school-based honorees include:

  • Kerry Brown Abbott – Abingdon
  • Amreen Alvi – Drew
  • Amy Apgar – Arlington Traditional School
  • Catherine Anne Baker – Randolph
  • Julie V. Bolin – McKinley
  • Elizabeth H. Castillo – Kenmore
  • Aldoina M. Cooper – Carlin Springs
  • Shannan L. Ellis – Jefferson
  • Martha F. Fishbein – Oakridge
  • Dani Rebecca Greene – Jamestown
  • Ivonne H. Govea – Key
  • Nana Aba W. Guerra –Arlington Science Focus
  • Lisa B. Jackson – Ashlawn
  • Mary Filicetti Kakareka – Barcroft
  • Faylinda Kodis – Claremont
  • Lisa Ann Lee – Stratford Program
  • Albert E. Lewis – Henry
  • Scott Thornton Lockhart – Career Center
  • Debbie McFarland – Glebe
  • Elizabeth A. Minihan – Arlington Mill High School Continuation Program
  • Jeffery A. Pabotoy – Yorktown
  • Nadia Betssy Robles – Gunston
  • Heidi M. Smith – Hoffman-Boston
  • Laurel L. Sheridan – Wakefield
  • Martha Camacho Stewart – Nottingham
  • Christine B. Taylor – Swanson
  • Wendy B. Taylor – Washington-Lee
  • Sherilyn Thulin Wall – Williamsburg
  • Beth Zivic – Taylor

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