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Employee Recognition

RAVE: Recognizing All Valuable Employees

Education is a people business – we are only as strong as the people who work with our students and keep our schools and offices open and running every day. This page is an opportunity to recognize some of our many outstanding employees for their commitment to education, their skill, and/ or their willingness to go above and beyond on behalf of our students and our colleagues.

For more information about the RAVE nomination process and awards, please review the RAVE FAQ document.

Nomination Forms

You can nominate any district employee for recognition (except for yourself). Nominated and approved employees will be highlighted on this page. All approved nominees are considered for formal recognition by the Superintendent and Board of Education, as long as they continue to be active employees in good standing.

Do you know of any SFUSD employees (individuals or teams) who make a difference and are exemplary models of our core values? Click here to nominate them!


Featured Employee RAVE!

RAVE winner William Patterson and others

Featured: William Patterson, Special Education Teacher - Ruth Asawa School of the Arts - Special Service Award Winner for February 2018

"Will is consistently advocating and planning for our students. He is proactive about keeping his students engaged in their classes and working with teachers to find ways to better support his students. His discussions in IEP meetings are never just about getting the student through the individual issues they might be facing at that moment, but always looking to prepare them for a fulfilling life after they leave SOTA." - Nominated 02/2017

View Past Featured RAVE's here.

Pre-K Team (Danielle Lurie, Haiyang Yu, Ana Roblero, Monica Mendoza) - Rooftop Community School - Distinguished Service Award Winner for February 2018

"As the parent of a child with an IEP, I cannot emphasize enough how valuable and reassuring this sense of being involved on a daily basis in my child’s education is. The Rooftop preschool teachers have always been open to my suggestions regarding my child’s education and have shown a flexibility regarding my child’s varying support needs that allows them to adjust their approach from day-to-day. Both teachers have always been responsive to email questions and suggestions and have made themselves available for short meetings outside of school time. " - Nominated 2 times 05/2017

Cynthia Vaughn, 1st Grade Teacher - Rooftop Community School

"Throughout all my schooling (including grad school), and my children's education both at Rooftop and local private schools, I have never seen a teacher who is so perfectly suited for what she is doing, and who is like a maestro with her students. Over the several times I have been in Ms. Vaughn's class, I was amazed not simply with her deep and sincere love for the children, which a lot of teachers have, but more so with how she conducted her class like a symphony. She had the right tone, the temperament and the right cadence. She split her teaching time brilliantly into equal doses of leaning, limits and laughter. The children all learned, laughed and loved her - and so did we." - Nominated 02/2018

Sue Mocklin, Middle School Teacher - Rooftop Community School

"She is a great teacher/person and I get a vibe that she really cares. [She is] great with parent student communication." - Nominated 02/2018

Julia Smith, 1st Grade Teacher - Rooftop Community School

"I have never seen a person so genuinely dedicated to the success of each one of her kids in her classrooms. She is constantly going above and beyond in so many ways. She connects with students in her classroom immensely, handing out hand written notes everyday to kids with a quick “pick me up” which one parent said 'goes right above their bed and stays there for them to see everyday.' Julia is an inspiration to me and all at Rooftop!" - Nominated 02/2018 (also nominated 12/2017)

James Robertson, Computer Science & Robotics Teacher - Willie L. Brown Middle School

"Mr. Robertson is one of the most dedicated teachers I know. He works 70-hour weeks to make sure that his students have the toolsthey need to succeed and beat the challenges they might face based on the zip codewhere their home is. Every day he develops and teaches high-quality lessons around robotics and computer science that students can't wait to be in class for. His classroom is always open after school so there is time for students to continue the work on their robotics projects." - Nominated 02/2018

Multilingual Pathways Department - Curriculum & Instruction

"We have been impressed with this team for their responsive, caring attitude and willingness to go the extra mile. They are a very dedicated staff that does a lot with relatively few people." - Nominated 02/2018

Ryan Swick, Kindergarten Teacher - Harvey Milk Civil Rights Academy

"Our daughter has thrived in Mr. Swick's classroom. She is excited to be at school, she's excited to learn, and she brings home ideas, concepts, and vocabulary that I never would have expected from Kindergarten. Mr. Swick is approachable, fun, and exceptionally hard-working. We as parents, and as a school community, are fortunate to have him in our lives!" - Nominated 02/2018

Roberto Hernandez, 4th + 5th Grade Teacher - Leonard R. Flynn Elementary School - Special Service Award Winner for January 2018

"He teaches them to be excellent learners and also to be thoughtful young people committed to social justice. He does this by motivating each student by his own deep enthusiasm for learning and for doing what is right. My daughter once told me "Mr. H. doesn't treat us like little children. He respects us and that makes us want to do even better". - Nominated 01/2017

Tara Castro, 8th Grade ELA Teacher - A.P. Giannini Middle School

"Ms. Castro is extremely humble and always strives to deepen her practice without anyneed for recognition. She is selfless and spends countless hours meeting with hercolleagues before and after school to support their growth as educators. She is tirelessin her pursuit to create deeper collaboration amongst her colleagues in support ofstudent learning outcomes." - Nominated 01/2018

Rafael Frias, Attendance Liaison - John Muir Elementary School

"Mr. Frias has built relationships with families and students alike. He will do home visits and finds out what families need to ensure that our students come to school on time. His dedication to the families and school is amazing. He is a role model and is dressed for success every day. Students and staff can depend on Mr. Frias to hold high expectations for us as he does for himself. We are so fortunate to have Mr. Frias at our school!" - Nominated 01/2018

Christina Huizar, TSA Literacy Coach/ Literacy Intervention Specialist - Tenderloin Community School

"Christina has a positive attitude, remains cool, calm and collected in the fact of challenges, and is passionate about sharing her love of literacy with others. She is student-focused, collaborative, and is incredibly kind and generous in sharing her time and talents with others. Christina's actions and words demonstrate her commitment to social justice and equity." - Nominated 01/2018

Tammy Yan, Resource Specialist Program Teacher - Gordon J. Lau Elementary School

"A positive quality that makes [Tammy] exceptional as an RSP teacher is her kindness towards our students, even when some behave aggressively towards her. She is calm and supportive, especially when students are challenging and don’t listen. She is respectful and will never discuss issues or concerns about any student or staff members with others. As a staff member, she is hardworking, thoughtful, efficient, funny and uplifting when morale is low. She is truly a role model for staff and students, alike." - Nominated 01/2018

Shellie Wiener, Secretary - Alamo Elementary School

Shellie is "an over-achiever in all she does. [She] makes sure all decisions are only in the best interest of the school's parents and students. She multi-tasks and gets it all done!" - Nominated 01/2018