Achievement Above All Event
Special Programs & D.O. Achievement Above All Event
Posted on 05/18/2018
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May 2018 – In the final Achievement Above All event of the 2017-2018 school year, the Glendale Union High School District Governing Board honored members of the Online Learning Academy, NextSTEP, Northern Academy and the District Office on May 16.

Achievement Above All: Teacher

Cary Gilbert has been with GUHSD for 15 years, originally working in the community based and MD programs at his alma mater, Cortez High School. Soon after he transferred to Northern Academy where he has been a true jack-of-all-trades, as amazing special educators often are. He has taught a variety of subjects and has been positively impacting students’ lives ever since. He has taught summer school due to his passion to see students achieve.

Coworkers describe Mr. Gilbert as someone who is always seeking to improve. He is quick to offer to assist others and guides and mentors new teachers. Mr. Gilbert has taken on a number of extra duties around the campus, including motivational reinforcements for student behavior and graduation organization.

An esteemed college had this to say, “ Mr. Gilbert has embraced the culture of Northern Academy and continues to display unprecedented work ethic. He is a phenomenal teacher, case manager and a huge asset to the Northern Academy.”

Congratulations, Mr. Cary Gilbert.
Teacher of the Year Teacher of the year

Achievement Above All: Student

Sarai Fabina Mendoza is this year’s Student of the Year for Special Programs. She has attended the GUHSD Online Learning Academy since October of 2015. She started attending the online school because of medical issues which made it difficult for her to remain on a traditional campus.

Sarai has always kept school a priority. She even doubled up in summer school to take the Algebra 2 block class along with an online elective. She remained focused and determined to graduate this semester so that she can attend ASU in the fall.

Online administrator Christine Lord had this to say, “ Sarai is a dedicated, conscientious young lady. She exemplifies the meaning of perseverance and is a self-directed learner.” Congratulations Sarai.
Student of the YearStudent of the Year

Achievement Above All: Special Programs Support Staff

Dan McKeever has a long history with GUHSD. Although he has only worked with Next STEP for the past two years, Mr. McKeever is a graduate of Moon Valley.

Mr. McKeever taught math at the middle school level for 24 years before coming to Next STEP. He put to good use his math background and has helped students with various tasks from counting bi-weekly paychecks, to knowing how much more time they have on their break.

Next STEP Facilitator, Stephanie Slover, had this to say about Mr. McKeever, “He has had the opportunity to work in every area Next STEP has to offer. He has worked the car wash lab, the janitorial crew, gone to the library with students, attended job fairs and completed any task we have thrown at him with a smile and a positive attitude, while keeping students engaged and involved in the activity.”

Thank you for your dedication and congratulations, Mr. McKeever.
Support Staff of the YearSupport Staff of the Year

Achievement Above All: District Office Support Staff

The District Office Support Staff Employees of the Year are Adrian Samaniego, Greg Barraza, and Craig Trogani from the garage.

As mechanics, they have the daunting task to repair all 150 vehicles associated with the district. Transportation supervisor Hilma Gustafson had this to say, “Each one of them comes to work with a smile on their face, treats everyone they come into contact with professionally and at the end of the day, that simile is still there.

As employees of the garage, the put in very long, hot days and the work day doesn’t end, predictably. Late evenings rescuing a field trip group or a weekend call for a mechanical breakdown. An occasional weekend to make sure all is up and running for the next school day. They do an awesome job at keeping the district’s transportation fleet up and running.

Congratulations to all of the Achievement Above All recipients for the 2017-2018 year! We’re proud of your accomplishments and commitment to the students, families and community of the Glendale Union High School District.
D.O. Staff of the YearD.O. Staff of the Year

Please enjoy this highlight video from the evening.