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Apple Awards honor Castle Pines teachers

By Lisa Crockett

The Douglas County Educational Foundation (DCEF) is hosting the Seventh Annual Apple Awards in March. The pool of teacher representatives who are eligible for the awards – which honor excellence in teaching – comes from nominations by parents, students, school faculty and staff. This year, DCEF received roughly 5,300 nominations. Each school in Douglas County School District used these nominations to select one teacher to represent their school.

Nominees from Castle Pines schools are: Leanne Weyman (Middle School Science, American Academy), Terra Shaffner (First Grade, Buffalo Ridge Elementary School), Glenn Albert (Lead Teacher, Upper Elementary, DCS Montessori Charter School), Julia Dale (Vocal Music, Rock Canyon High School), Amy Tempel (Library Media Specialist, Rocky Heights Middle School), and Kristen Ward Brown (Second Grade, Timber Trail Elementary School).

From these representatives, a primary-grade and secondary-grade finalist from each of the nine DCSD feeder areas are chosen based on applications from each representative. Applications cover everything from the teacher’s own educational background, to their instructional expertise and teaching philosophy.

“We also ask them to tell us how they are a world-class educator,” said Michelle Tripp, Grants Manager for DCEF. “We’re interested to know how they are teaching students in a twenty-first century world.”

All representatives are invited to attend the Apple Awards Ceremony at the Sheraton Denver Downtown and are treated to a Hollywood-style red carpet, black-tie event. The event not only honors teachers, but also raises funds for the DCEF through corporate partnerships. The final winners – one primary teacher and one secondary teacher – receive a cash award from the DCEF as well as a gift from their school community.

In addition to the Apple Awards, Superintendent Elizabeth Celania-Fagen will recognize a teacher as a “World Class Educator,” and a Corporate Partner will be recognized for its contributions to the educational community.

New this year, a “classified” employee (made up of a wide array of employees in the District who are not teachers or administrators) will be recognized for outstanding performance.

For more information about the DCEF and the Apple Awards, visit



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