RAVE Winners 2018

RAVE Winners 2018

Joel Velasquez, School Secretary - Rooftop Community School, Burnett Campus - Distinguished Service Award Winner for October 2018

"Joel performs his duties daily while wearing many hats. His regular hat, school secretary, his nursing hat, every booboo that needs a band-aid or knee that needs an ice pack goes through Joel. He is also in charge of the magic thermometer that makes tummy aches and headaches incredibly disappear. He wears the hat of copy machine master, he knows all the ins and outs of our over used copy machine and can make homework of 24 pages for 32 students in the blink of an eye. He also wears the caregiver hat - often children visit the office just to get a hug from Joel. Joel Velasquez goes above and beyond what his job description reads. He truly cares about this school and the people in it." - Nominated 03/2018

James Robertson, Computer Science & Robotics Teacher - Willie L. Brown Middle School - Special Service Award Winner for October 2018

"Mr. Robertson is one of the most dedicated teachers I know. He works 70-hour weeks to make sure that his students have the tools they need to succeed and beat the challenges they might face based on the zip code where 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

Jeanine Kennard, Paraeducator and ASP Teacher - Bret Harte Elementary School - Distinguished Service Award Winner for September 2018

"Ms. Princess has served and supported Bret Harte Elementary for nearly twenty years and been part of the community for even longer. While newer staff complain about feeling tired and burned out, Ms. Princess shows up each day full of patience, respect, and hugs and kisses. When families are having a hard time connecting with the school, Ms. Princess gets the call. She treats Bret Harte students with the respect and dignity that all students deserve. She holds them to high expectations and empowers them as community members and scholars." - Nominated 08/2017

Tara Castro, 8th Grade ELA Teacher - A.P. Giannini Middle School - Special Service Award Winner for September 2018

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

Alma Portillo, School Secretary - Junipero Serra Annex Early Education School - Special Service Award Winner for August 2018

"This employee goes well beyond the scope of her workload. She has a dedication to serve the needs of the children and families and support all staff in that regard. She is a model employee always positive in her attitude and willing to serve the administrator with all the school's needs." - Nominated 05/2017

Teanisha Hudson, Paraprofessional - Hoover Middle School-Special Service Award Winner for August 2018

"Ms. Hudson has been a shining light at Hoover, despite instability and difficulties in the classes she has supported in the SOAR program there. Everyone I have met who works with her says amazing things about her." - Nominated 08/2018

Robert Daniels, Director - Visual & Performing Arts - Distinguished Service Award Winner for June 2018

"Rob is constantly trying to make his employees who move around a lot feel more grounded in each individual place. At the same time he has to respect the space limitations of the sites he serves. Next year he has developed a creative plan of positive, affirming site visits to see the teachers in their milieu and how VAPA, together with the teachers and principals, can fully support program, student and teacher space needs." - Nominated 06/2017

Special Education Team (Erin Hartfield, Travis Porter, Buckley Rosato, Sophie Iribarren, Cole Manieri, Michelle Wong, Sara Mayerson, Yehudit (Malka) Serrano-Falcon) - Aptos Middle School - Distinguished Service Award Winner for May 2018

"I have the distinct pleasure of working with some of the best and MOST dedicated special education teachers that SFUSD has! They truly care about their students, by going above and beyond their duties. Many are here early and many stay late to support students by working with them, or consulting with general education teachers to figure out modifications and accommodations that are most appropriate." - Nominated 12/2017

Tammy Yan, Resource Specialist Program Teacher - Gordon J. Lau Elementary School - Special Service Award Winner for May 2018

"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

Jennifer Comeans, TSA / Literacy Coach - Dr. George Washington Carver Elementary School - Distinguished Service Award Winner for April 2018

"In the past 24 hours, Jennifer spearheaded our annual Literacy Night, participated in Instructional Rounds, and facilitated PD for our staff. For Literacy Night, she recruited teachers to volunteer, found most of the activities for each teacher to lead, made copies and collected materials for the evening. The event was well organized and well attended with happy children and families. Then this morning she participated in instructional rounds at our site: observing teachers and students and debriefing with a group of principals. This afternoon, she led our staff through a writing pd that introduced them to a new resource, honed their skills in looking at student work, and provided planning time. These events were heavy lifts and Jennifer takes them with stride: always being professional, modeling leadership, and being a support to both adults and students." - Nominated 02/2017

Rachael Spillard, Science Teacher and Department Chair - George Washington High School - Distinguished Service Award Winner for April 2018

"Rachael is not only a dynamic and dedicated classroom teacher, but she is also our department chair who goes above and beyond to support us in our work as teachers. Whether it's taking care of the budget, organizing Haz-Mat pickups, or advocating for science with administration, Rachael takes care of the details of running the department so we can focus on our classrooms. On top of that, she is highly involved with activities on campus from social committee to robotics club - Rachael really does it all!" - Nominated 05/2017

Alice Lin-Tay, School Secretary - Tenderloin Community School - Distinguished Service Award Winner for March 2018

"Some of the positive qualities that distinguish Alice's work are her kindness, thoughtfulness, consideration of others, and 'can do' attitude. Alice treats all families, students, and staff with respect. As busy as she is, she takes the time to do nice things for others. On the Friday before school started, when teachers were busily setting up their classrooms, Alice announced that there was food in the staff lounge if anyone was interested. Tenderloin serves vulnerable families, and takes the time to support and assist them." - Nominated 08/2017

Candy Lee, Classroom Teacher - Chinese Education Center - Special Service Award Winner for March 2018

"Candy Lee is an outstanding classroom teacher and teacher leader at CEC. Another distinction is that she has come full-circle in her career because she attended the Chinese Education Center as a student when she first entered the United States as a newcomer herself. Recently, Ms. Lee was selected to receive a Fulbright Scholarship to work in Taiwan next year. Amidst our country's current political state of literally and figuratively building walls, Ms. Lee will be actively building a bridge when she begins her work as a Fulbright Scholar in Taiwan. All of us in the CEC school community stand so deeply proud of her accomplishments as a teacher, a teacher leader, and now, as a Fulbright Scholar. " - Nominated 03/2017

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 daily 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 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

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

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


This page was last updated on March 5, 2021