Aragon teacher named Secondary Educator of the Year
Aragon Middle School teacher Andrea Barnes accepts the ATPE Secondary Educator of the Year award from David de la Garza, past president of the ATPE, during the 2012 ATPE Summit Awards Banquet July 16 at the Austin Convention Center.
August 9, 2012—Aragon Middle School seventh- and eighth-grade teacher Andrea Barnes has been named the Secondary Educator of the Year by the Association of Texas Professional Educators (ATPE).
Barnes, a 23-year veteran of public education, was presented with the honor during the 2012 ATPE Summit Awards Banquet July 16 at the Austin Convention Center. She was one of three finalists for the award.
Barnes teaches READ 180 at Aragon—a program that accelerates students’ reading comprehension. Her READ 180 students are encouraged to stand upon a floor tile facing a mirror on the wall, and state what they hope, believe, dream and want to achieve.
“When I was nominated and again when I became a finalist for the ATPE Teacher of the Year, I stood on the classroom tile in front of my travelers (students) and I said, ‘I have achieved this goal, and now I dream of winning ATPE Secondary Teacher of the Year.”
Barnes took the tile with her to Austin, placing it beneath her feet during the oral interviews. When she was announced as the winner, she brought it on stage and stood upon it as she accepted the award.
“I stood on the tile and thought of all of my students that had stood on this very tile stating their hopes, dreams, beliefs and what they wanted to achieve. It truly was a dream come true,” Barnes said. “My former student wrote, ‘I will achieve my dreams because you just taught me that I will get what I want if I set it on my mind.’”
Nearly 800 people celebrated the achievements of public school educators at the banquet, where awards were presented to educators in administrator, associate, elementary and secondary teacher and special services categories.
Attendees at the ATPE Summit, the association’s annual education conference, also had the opportunity to attend professional development sessions, hear from renowned educators, participate in the organization’s annual governance meeting, the ATPE House of Delegates, and elect new state officers for 2012-13.
“I think everyone should live their daily lives with hope, believing, dreaming and striving to achieve their goals and be their best. I feel like I live my life in this way and that is why it was a great honor to be the ATPE Secondary Teacher of the Year,” Barnes said.