by Marissa Lorenz
Just weeks after being named Colorado State Science Fair Teacher of the Year, Emmylou Harmon was recognized as the 2020-2021 West Grand School District Teacher of the Year as well.
At the most recent meeting of the Board of Education, West Grand High School Principal Elizabeth Bauer presented Harmon, explaining that, with four outstanding nominees put forth from across the district, there had been “a resounding decision” in Harmon’s favor.
Bauer gave some background, acknowledging Harmon as “one of our longest-tenured, most experienced, and wisest teachers.” She noted that Harmon has taught a wide range of courses, that she regularly spends “countless hours” before and after school to support students, and that she leads the District Health Team.
In 2020-2021, Bauer expounded, Harmon gave up her planning period, “demanding” to offer another class to students when the school was down a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) teacher. “She said that it wasn’t fair for the students to miss out on an opportunity.”
The Principal extended personal gratitude for Harmon’s honesty.
“She always calls me out and asks me questions at the most inconvenient time. She encourages others and always refuses to give up on our students.”
As a particular example of Harmon’s impact on students, Bauer told the story of some equipment going missing from the Greenhouse.
“It was frustrating,” Bauer stated. “But a student came up to [Ms. Harmon] and said, ‘Don’t worry; we got you.’” A
few days later, the equipment was returned with an apology.
“It was returned because the students had Ms. Harmon’s back,” Bauer summarized. “That is pretty powerful. When students Ms. Harmon has taught previously… when she’s made such a big impact on their lives that they returned the favor–it’s a testament to her heart and dedication to our students and our community.”
Bauer also formally recognized Harmon as recipient of the State Science Fair/Lockheed Martin Teacher of the Year.
“[Ms. Harmon] had to do a lot of pivoting this past year because of COVID-19 to participate in a virtual science fair. (…) She does so many things with our students in the science field, and we are proud that she has received this state recognition.”