By David Fleet
Goodrich- Each week during the school year, the Michigan Lottery selects one outstanding educator to receive the Excellence in Education award. Earlier this month Oaktree Elementary third grade teacher Stephanie Mellendorf was selected.
“Thank you to the community for allowing me to be part of their children’s education,” said Mellendorf. “The recognition is awesome but there are so many people that help we do what I do. We have a team here in Goodrich that support me and my job.”
The Michigan Lottery established the Excellence in Education awards in 2014 to recognize outstanding public-school educators across the state during the school year. The award includes a $1,500 cash prize and a $500 grant to the educator’s classroom, school or school district.
A Powers Catholic High School graduate, Mellendorf earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Michigan State University, teaching certification from Eastern Michigan University and a master’s degree from Oakland University. She has been in the Goodrich School District for 23 years.
“My desire to teach is centered around my love of working with children,” said Mellendorf. “Once I started taking classes in education I knew for sure that what I wanted to do.”
“My favorite part of being a teacher is watching children’s excitement when they learn something new.”
Outstanding public-school educators like Mellendorf may be nominated for an Excellence in Education award at http://bit.ly/ExcellenceInEducation or through the websites of the Lottery’s media partner stations.
“The reason I teach is for the students—like many educators do,” she said. “The best part teaching is even on a bad day you still help someone learn. It may be someone at school you had made a connection with either academically or socially. It makes those tough days easier. Also, when you do something for kids they come right out and say it —you know where stand. It’s easy to feel the positivity from your students.”
“I love working with kids and the energy they bring,” she added. “I love Goodrich and those I work with, the families and the community that has been so very supportive of schools.”