The Apache Junction Unified School District Employees and Volunteer of the Month for February were selected from Desert Vista Elementary School and introduced by Principal Pat Smith.
Dr. Pam Lane-Garon (“Dr. Pam,” as she is known at the school) is the Volunteer of the Month.
“I’ve been able to witness what a difference she makes with our kids,” said Smith. “Many who may not have seen their potential, do something different by having the opportunity to learn and compete in the game of chess. She has volunteered for the last few years, overseeing the Desert Vista Chess Club and, for the past two years, our successful winning chess team tournament. I have really appreciated her dedication, giving to our students and just really instilling that belief in themselves.”
“Gilbert Lopez was nominated by several staff members for recognition as the Classified (non-teaching) Employee of the Month,” announced Smith. “He is new to Desert Vista; this is his first year with us. He serves on our custodial crew and he does amazing things for DVES. Our school will actually be 30 years old at the start of the new school year, and our custodial crew has kept us really looking nice.
“Our building manager shared with me that Gilbert is not only a hard worker, he is kind and generous and always helping our teachers, staff and children. Every day at lunch, Gilbert interacts with our students in a very positive way. He is a person the children look up to, and I’m glad he is on our team.”
“Amy Hopkins was nominated by her peers as Certified (teacher) of the Month because she has really shown what a well-rounded teacher is,”said Smith. “She is very well respected by her colleagues, because they can go to her for help and she makes everyone feel like we’re one big family, learning and making progress together.
“Amy is always willing to take on new challenges. In just two years at Desert Vista, she has served our learning community as a team lead, a facilitator, a site professional developer and also has served on our primary textbook adoption committee for the district.”
Photo above left to right: Classified (non-teaching) Employee of the Month Gilbert Lopez, Certified (teacher) Employee of the Month Amy Hopkins, Volunteer of the Month Dr. Pam Lane-Garon, Desert Vista Principal Pat Smith