Katie Albers, who teaches a split class of Grades 4 and 5 at Southview Community School, is the Southeastern Zone 6 Edwin Parr winner for 2023. MHN PHOTO SAMANTHA JOHNSON, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Katie Albers, who teaches a split class of Grades 4 and 5 at Southview Community School, is the Southeastern Zone 6 Edwin Parr winner for 2023. Medicine Hat Public School Division trustees and members of the leadership team were there to cheer her on when she received the news.

“I didn’t actually know everyone would be there,” said Albers. “It was very surprising to me and I felt so happy. It was nice to have so much support. I was honoured and very surprised I won. There were a lot of good teachers there.”

Her class is working on a resiliency project where students learn about the importance of resiliency and what it means, and how each of us can bounce back from hard times in our lives. The project also involves students choosing a person who has helped them persevere. The class will be having an ice cream social near the end of June and inviting each of these people so they can be honoured for their ability to help students.

“For me, this has been my highlight so far, but this group will always be so special to me because it was my first class,” stated Albers, who is happy for the summer to come, but also emotional with the conclusion of her first year of teaching.

But there are plenty of activities planned for June, including some swimming dates.

“I was so proud of them on Friday,” said Albers. “We went to Crestwood Pool and two of the lifeguards gave a huge compliment to our class and said this school is amazing, these kids are so kind and loving and this school is awesome.”

Albers took that compliment and brought it back to the kids, knowing it was important they also hear those kind words.

The class will also be visiting the water park and the grand finale will be a class party.

“We have to have a day where we bring our stuffies and blankies and have a class movie to end the year because that has been a request all year,” said Albers.

Before having children, Albers was an educational assistant and then stayed home for close to 15 years raising her three children. She went back to university as a mature adult to pursue her dream of becoming a teacher, one she has held most of her life after a teacher realized – when Albers was in Grade 3 – that she couldn’t read.

“Somebody saw me and said this girl is memorizing all the books her parents read to her. I wanted to become a teacher so I could be someone who saw kids too.”

By SAMANTHA JOHNSON, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Jun 07, 2023

This item reprinted with permission from   Medicine Hat News   Medicine Hat, Alberta

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