We are proud to announce the fourth quarter B-P Successories winners for the 2020-21 school year:
- Erin Loatman
- Jason Kruger
- McKayla Brunelle
- Rick Wallace
- Amy Wurz
Junior high school life skills teacher Erin Loatman will receive a personal day, which Superintendent Stephen Tomlinson will cover. Jason Kruger, McKayla Brunelle, Rick Wallace, and Amy Wurz will all receive B-P Yeti Travel mugs. Please read below to hear why each of these five amazing B-P employees were chosen to win a Successories Award this quarter:
Erin Loatman is a veteran teacher who has spent 19 of her 22 years in education at B-P. This is her seventh year as junior high school life skills teacher, but she says she “has taught special education in a self-contained setting at every grade level and in every building.”
Loatman’s nomination came from the parent of one of her students who wanted to thank her for making her daughter “feel like a valuable member of the B-P community by organizing all of her push-ins and pull-outs and encouraging connections and inclusion with all of the teachers.”
“As a parent of a child with learning challenges, I worry about her feeling like (as she calls it) ‘a normal teenager,’” the nomination continued. “I want to thank you for all that you do to help her feel confident and accepted. You have been our miracle worker through her junior high experience at B-P.”
Loatman said she feels “so lucky to be able to work with students and their families for multiple years, although it does make it difficult when it is time for them to move on and we have to say goodbye.” She also noted that since the junior and senior high school levels are now on the same campus, it will be much easier for her to keep in touch and watch the progress of her students.
“I am so proud of my students and how well they have handled everything that has come their way since March 13, 2020,” Loatman said. “Being a part of their success means the world to me. This particular group of students will always hold a very special place in my heart because we have been through so much together!”
Jason Kruger teaches seventh and eighth grade social studies at B-P Junior High School. He also teaches an elective class called Outdoor Life, which he unfortunately was unable to offer this past school year. He has worked in education for 11 years, including seven years at B-P. Outside of the classroom, Jason is active with the athletics department as a coach for the modified football team and an assistant coach for the varsity track and field team, specializing in the throwing events. He also is a member of the DLT/BLT and is a Google Certified Educator Level One.
His Successories nomination came from a student who thanked him for “being an awesome teacher” and highlighted his ability to “listen to his students.”
“It was a big shock to me,” said Kruger, describing the accolade as something he was “not expecting” but also “a great way to end this school year and head into summer.”
“I am extremely thankful for my students being willing to take risks and be part of some of the more challenging tasks that they did this year,” he added.
McKayla Brunelle recently received her master’s degree in literacy and is in her first year as a full-time teacher, but she is no stranger to Broadalbin-Perth. She is a 2014 B-P graduate and worked in the district as a substitute teacher while she was in college. After taking over a maternity leave for two years, she took over a full-time position of her own this past school year. Brunelle is an elementary special education teacher who works primarily with first-grade students, in addition to doing primary instruction math for third graders.
Brunelle’s nomination came from a parent who wanted to thank her for helping their child to “open up and really thrive this year!” The nomination read, in part: “He has become a more confident little guy and his reading and math skills are soaring. Your heart and dedication to your students shines through and we couldn’t be more grateful to you!”
“I am beyond grateful to be nominated for this award,” Brunelle said. “I feel thankful to be able to work with such supportive families. It truly is a team effort!”
Rick Wallace is another first-year teacher with a long history at B-P. He is a 2015 graduate of Broadalbin-Perth and worked as a teaching assistant in the district for four years before being hired as a full-time teacher. He is currently a special education teacher at the senior high school. Wallace also has served as an assistant coach for B-P’s football program for the past six years.
It was actually his work on the football field that led a parent to nominate Wallace for a Successories award. The parent said that Wallace helped their autistic child learn and understand the game of football and provided assistance when the student needed extra help remembering plays. Wallace gave the student an armband with the plays written out, so the student could look at his arm and it would tell him what he needed to do.
The nomination read: “I thank Rick each and every day for being there for my son in many ways that I know of and that I don’t know of. I’m so thankful for Rick teaching my son the game of football and showing the world that a kid can do anything when they have a disability.”
Upon learning of his nomination, Wallace said, “It is an honor to know the impact that I had on this student beyond the game of football. Although it was my role to educate him, he educated me along the way as well. He will forever have an influence on me as a person, educator and coach at Broadalbin-Perth.”
Amy Wurz just completed her 14th year in education. She has been a member of the B-P community for the past seven years, starting out as a pre-K teacher, and spending time as a kindergarten and second-grade teacher before moving back to pre-K. Outside of the classroom, Wurz serves as the district’s co-coordinator for Odyssey of the Mind.
Wurz’s nomination came from the parent of one of her pre-K students who wanted to thank her for “being so open to teaching remote this year — and then to be so willing to take on both remote AND in-person students.”
The parent noted that their son was struggling with remote learning and using the computer to learn, but that “Mrs. Wurz was willing to send home extra assignments and advice for us.” Once their son returned to in-person learning, the parent said he absolutely excelled. “You can tell how much he loves being at school and we owe it all to you and your dedication to teaching, whether it be on the computer or in person. B-P is lucky to have you!” the nomination read.
Wurz said she was shocked and honored to receive a Successories award. “I feel so grateful to work with such great families who understand the difficulty of balancing remote learning with in-person learning at the same time. I work with such great people here at B-P.”