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Belton ISD Announces Teachers of the Year

Belton Early Childhood School Pre-K Teacher Mandy Agee and Special Programs Adapted P.E. Teacher Lauren Marx have been selected as the Belton ISD Elementary and Secondary Teachers of the Year for 2019-2020!

Agee and Marx, along with their families, received the good news during a special surprise visit from Superintendent Dr. Matt Smith, Assistant Superintendent Dr. Deanna Lovesmith and their campus or department leader Friday afternoon. 

Congratulations to these two outstanding, dedicated educators!

Mandy Agee
2020 Elementary Teacher of the Year

Mandy Agee, Elementary Teacher of the Year

How long have you taught?
I’ve taught 21 years total and am finishing my fourth year in Belton ISD.

Where did you get your degree?
I received my education degree with a specialization in early childhood from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor and a master's in library science from Sam Houston State University.

How does it feel to be selected as teacher of the year? 
I am honored to be recognized as Elementary School Teacher of the year for BISD. It's a wonderful feeling to be acknowledged by my coworkers and school district.

Is there a memorable teacher or experience that was pivotal in your decision to become a teacher? 
I had a difficult time in kindergarten. My kindergarten teacher made a point to make a connection with me and give me a purpose to come to school each day. She helped give me the chance to take risks and feel safe in the classroom. She is the reason I became a teacher.

What specifically do you think makes you stand out as a teacher?  
I work hard to make sure that my students feel safe and that I have a connection with each one of them. It's not my classroom … It's our classroom. I want them to feel ownership in their learning and that we are a team.  

How have you transitioned into remote learning and how have students responded?
We have weekly Zooms that range from scavenger hunts, read alouds, directed drawings and educational games. We are so excited to see each on our Zooms. It's definitely the highlight of my week. The parents also keep connected through my class app and share pictures of their extended learning activities and projects. It's fun to see them learning at home.

What does getting this honor and being a teacher mean to you?
Teaching is where my heart is and being honored for something that a love to do each day is a blessing.

What is your favorite thing about being a teacher?
I love watching students grow throughout the year and become successful learners. I also enjoy watching my students become a class family throughout the year. They learn how to support, connect and build relationships with each other.

If you could offer one piece of advice to a first-year teacher, what would it be?
Make a connection with each student. A special greeting, song, or dance will go a long way.

 

Lauren Marx
2020 Secondary Teacher of the Year

Lauren Marx Secondary Teacher of the Year

How long have you taught?
Sixteen years total - 15 of those in Belton ISD.

Where did you get your degree?
A bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor with a minor in special education.

How does it feel to be selected as teacher of the year?
It feels pretty amazing. I still have chill bumps. All the long hours of working in and behind the scenes has been appreciated and noticed. 

Is there a memorable teacher or experience that was pivotal in your decision to become a teacher? 
I think I became the teacher I am today when I was given the opportunity to grow the Adapted PE program into the way the students deserved it to be. I felt supported by my administration and had the confidence to make it successful. 

What specifically do you think makes you stand out as a teacher?
I’m able to be creative with my thoughts and make them a reality. 

How have you transitioned into remote learning and how have students responded?
I have been working a lot with the elementary PE teachers to help facilitate Virtual Field Day. I’ve also sent my students fun activities to do with their families and friends. It has been fun to see the pictures and see the stories the parents share. 

What does getting this honor and being a teacher mean to you? 
It means I’m making a powerful and positive impact with our special needs students and it’s being noticed. 

What is your favorite thing about being a teacher?
Giving students the opportunity to make forever memories. 

If you could offer one piece of advice to a first-year teacher, what would it be? 
Don’t be afraid to be involved and be sure to stand back and watch and learn from your students.