FHN Teacher Shelly Parks Selected as Regional Teacher of the Year

Posted on 07/24/2018
Shelly Parks

Shelly Parks, an English Language Arts teacher at Francis Howell North High School (FHN), has been named a Regional Teacher of the Year by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). She was selected as one of ten recipients in the St. Louis Region and one of 32 from across the state who are now eligible for consideration as the Missouri Teacher of the Year. Parks was previously honored as the 2018 Francis Howell School District Teacher of the Year.

Parks was humbled by the prestigious honor. “I know there are amazing teachers in my building, in my kids’ buildings, and across the District. I also have many wonderful friends in districts across the state who are incredible teachers, so to be named a Regional Teacher of the Year is exciting, but I could easily point to many other deserving teachers I also hope get recognized in their careers.”

Parks, who has been a teacher in FHSD since 2002, teaches three very different student groups - AP Foundations, sophomore English, and senior AP English. But all her students have something in common – they matter to her. It is important for her to get to know her students and make them feel valued. It is the relationships that she builds with students that help her be an effective teacher.

Former FHN Principal Andy Downs has seen firsthand the impact she has on her students. “Shelly is truly driven to make sure that all students have access to high-quality educational opportunities, and she continually helps students to perform at a level that far exceeds what they thought was possible for themselves. She is their champion and will always make sure that they know that they are capable of great things.”

This is the third year of DESE’s Regional Teacher of the Year recognition, the program is designed to focus public attention on excellence in teaching and to honor classroom teachers across Missouri. Candidates are judged on how they are respected by students, parents, colleagues and the community, and whether or not they play an active role in the school community and provide quality leadership among their peers. Recipients must be able to demonstrate a strong ability to foster excellence in education through improved student learning.


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