EDUCATOR OF THE MONTH
PERSHING HILL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
The Board cannot officially recognize our Educator of the Month this morning without telling our audience about a fantastic non-profit program that works in schools to encourage pre-teen girls to develop self-respect and healthy lifestyles through dynamic, interactive lessons and running games, culminating in a celebratory 5K run. The program is known as “Girls on the Run,” and our Educator of the Month is Laura Hoch from Pershing Hill Elementary School.
When Laura learned about the program and its benefits, she took it upon herself to research the requirements and recruit staff members to attend the training and plan for the weekly meetings for 10 girls in grades 3-5. As a result, she initiated and implemented the first Girls on the Run running program at Pershing Hill. The organization’s curricula seek to address all aspects of the girls’ development to enhance their physical, emotional, mental, social and spiritual well-being while establishing a lifetime appreciation of health and fitness. One of the activities of Girls on the Run is working with staff to tend the first grade butterfly garden, as well as train for the official 5K race in Baltimore.
As well as heading up the Girls on the Run club, Laura Hock is also the Collaborative Decision Making lead, Primary Team lead, a member of the School Improvement Team and a member of the Leadership Team. Her compassion, patience and understanding make her a vital member of the school team and community. As a leader within the school, Laura works closely with administration, staff and parents to make a positive impact on all students. As well as being a general education first grade teacher, Laura has a background in special education and is well versed in meeting the needs of diverse students. It is because of her knowledge and skills that she is a highly sought after team member and colleague.
Laura has been observed in many different settings. Whether she is in the classroom delivering general instruction, in an IEP meeting or in a parent conference, she is always professional and effective. For example, when working with parents who are new to the IEP process, Mrs. Hoch ensures that she gives sufficient time and attention to questions that may arise, as well as providing additional resources. The same is true when she is working with her colleagues and her students.
Laura Hoch – you are always positive and willing to collaborate in the best interest of your students and your Girls on the Run membership. You are proactive in identifying barriers and working with others to ensure that all students under your watch are successful. So for these reasons and more, the Board is pleased to honor you as Educator of the Month for February 2017. Congratulations!