As the entire student body enthusiastically cheered, Tucson Hebrew Academy’s (THA’s) Teacher Excellence award was presented by Head of School, Johanna Shlomovich, to Hayley Lionheart, Middle School Humanities Teacher on Friday, May 19. Ms. Lionheart is concluding her second year at THA.
This award was established at the Jewish Community Foundation in 2005 by two former THA parents, Robyn Kessler and Martha Sampson z”l. Each year, this award recognizes a faculty member who demonstrates merit in teaching and inspiring students. This honor includes a $1,500 monetary award, used the following year for “educational experiences, classroom materials, or other applications that furthers education to the benefit of THA.”
Ms. Lionheart received numerous nominations from parents and fellow faculty members. Some of the comments submitted on Ms. Lionheart’s nomination included:
From faculty members: She “has been instrumental in combining her love for Language and the Arts into numerous school performances that have been impactful to students, families and staff…. She is a wonderful addition to the middle school team.” She “is one of the absolute best teachers I have worked with or near over the past 20+ years. She is dedicated to her students, her subject matter and to the Jewish faith – which isn’t even her own.” “She has definitely raised the expectation for not only the students, but teachers as well.” “She does not just inspire her students but also her fellow teachers.” “What she is doing at this school will help students on and off campus.” “Hayley pours her heart and soul into every endeavor in which she takes part.”
From Parents: “she worked extra with my kid because she saw his potential and pushed him to reach it.” “She is so passionate and imaginative and worked tirelessly to make the library a place where all of THA (parents, student and staff) can enjoy the transformed beautiful space.” “I applaud her creativity and willingness to make ELA interesting and tangible.”
You can establish a similar award through the Jewish Community Foundation at Jewish Philanthropies of Southern Arizona (JPSA) by contacting Brenda Landau, Director of Legacy Development.