For the third straight year, the Mill Valley and San Rafael chambers of commerce have partnered with Redwood Credit Union, Bank of Marin and others to honor teachers at the Excellence in Education Awards at a beautiful, in-person event earlier this week.
The celebration featured Marin County Superintendent of Schools Mary Jane Burke celebrating and interviewing the recipients, including Lisa Yee, a targeted learning instructor at Park Elementary School, and Monica Malmquist, an English Language specialist at Strawberry Point School.
Mill Valley School District officials said that Yee “has dedicated 20 years to the district and the Park School community as a reading and math interventionist. She has touched the lives of hundreds of students and staff,” and as some staff members share, ‘has an almost magical ability to find the exact skills and supports her students need to become stronger readers and mathematicians.’ This magic is not by accident; it is the byproduct of an incredible dedication to the profession of education, a love of life-long learning, and a passion for helping each student reach their fullest potential.”
“Lisa’s journey in the educational field has been a winding one. After receiving her B.S. in Elementary Education at Western Kentucky University, Lisa joined the Peace Corps to volunteer as a teacher in Honduras and later taught on the Navajo Reservation on Black Mesa, Arizona,” the district continued. “Beyond supporting the academic dreams of her students, Lisa led teacher training courses, dug wells, and worked with the Ministry of Health in Honduras. She has written and received grants from USAID, and has graced the halls of Park School with her positive spirit and genuine love of children. Lisa Yee is an inspiration to work with, and we are so fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with and learn from her all these years. Congratulations, Lisa Yee! “
Malmquist “is an English Language specialist at Strawberry Point School. Her professionalism, work ethic and commitment to Strawberry Point and the community are outstanding. Monica consistently goes above and beyond to ensure that all her students’ needs are met. Monica designs high interest lessons that are individualized to focus on each student’s English language development. Her attention to detail and creativity are extraordinary. She uses a wealth of resources systematically and intentionally to make connections and build an inclusive learning environment that provides joy, equity and access for her students, who thrive under her tutelage,” according to district officials.
“Monica runs a homework club each morning before school begins that provides academic help and homework assistance, as well as instills good work habits, organizational skills and a sense of accomplishment for her students,” they continued. “Monica recognizes the importance of family involvement and developing partnerships to create a culture of learning and achievement. She develops excellent relationships with parents and students who adore and trust her. She reaches out to families on a regular basis to keep them informed about their children’s education, offers support and organizes events. Monica genuinely cares about her students and families and embraces cultural differences. In addition to her work with students and families, Monica is a generous collaborator with her colleagues. She is a lifelong learner who keeps up to date with current evidence-based research and practices to optimize the achievement of her students. Monica is a fun, nurturing and passionate educator. Her enthusiasm, energy, flexibility, excitement in the classroom, and enjoyment of people, motivate and inspire those around her. Mill Valley School District is honored to nominate Monica Malmquist for the Excellence in Education award on behalf of all of its K-5 schools.”
Congratulations to these honorees!