Bagley wins excellence in teaching accolade

Connie Bagley with her celebratory balloons.

Surprise honor

If she would have known she was going to have visitors, Crockett Elementary teacher Connie Bagley said she would have dressed for the occasion.

That’s what she told a group of San Marcos CISD administrators, family members, and Learning Ally representatives who came to her room unannounced on Wednesday afternoon bearing flowers, balloons and the news that she was the recipient of a prestigious national achievement award.

With cameras clicking and video recorders running, Learning Ally representatives Terrie Noland and Jenny Falke told Bagley and her students that she is one of two teachers in the nation who has been awarded the Winslow Coyne Reitnouer Excellence in Teaching Award for “best practices that help students with print disabilities succeed in the mainstream classroom.” 

Noland said that Bagley and another winner will be recognized at the Student Success and Achievement Summit in April in Denver, Colorado, and will be provided traveling expenses for herself and a guest. In addition to being featured on the sponsor website and social media, the winners will receive several other gifts, including: a $1,500 personal cash prize; a $4,500 cash prize for their school to purchase classroom technology, tools, and resources; passes for themselves and five guests to attend the 2017 Dyslexia online conference; an engraved award from Tiffany’s; and their choice of a book to be recorded in their honor for Learning Ally’s extensive audiobook library.

Learning Ally will be releasing a national press release in March that will feature both of this year’s winners.

Bagley was surrounded by a group of her students who were quick to point out that their teacher deserved the honor. Bagley was one of three top finalists for 2014 Texas Teacher of the Year, and was the 2014 H-E-B Excellence in Education Award Winner in the Lifetime Achievement Category, Elementary Level. She’s taken Honorable Mention recognition with Learning Ally in previous years, as has Nelda Reyes, another SMCISD teacher at De Zavala Elementary.

Students at both Crockett and De Zavala Elementary take part in the annual “Great Reading Games Contest,” and last year, both schools were in the top three in the nation.

Joining the surprise group were Bagley’s husband Donny and their daughter Kharley Smith, SMCISD Director of Elementary Curriculum Nicole Dray, and Crockett Principal Doug Wozniak.

San Marcos Daily Record

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P.O. Box 1109, San Marcos, TX 78666