Applause, song, one acts, and praise from family and students festooned the announcement that English teacher Carrie Baldovin has been named the 2017 PRHS Teacher of the Year.
Baldovin, a 23 year veteran and mentor teacher, took the stage in the Performing Arts Center March 29, 2017 to receive a crown and cape from Math teacher Bobbie Mitchell, last year’s winner, and praise from husband, son, daughter, father, and neighbor, who each gave surprise testimonies. Retired English teacher Cal Wood led the audience with a guitar, slideshow, and lyrics devoted to Baldovin’s teaching, and six teachers conspired in one act performances that portrayed such antics as the day Baldovin taught “The Great Gatsby” while lying on the floor. Former student Noe Santa Cruz told Baldovin from the mic that she was a teacher like no other.
“Carrie is everything that we believe a teacher should be. She eagerly pursues new, refreshing ideas to enliven the curriculum, create vitalizing lessons for her students, and bring an American literature to life,” Principal Eric Martinez said.
Martinez also praised Baldovin for being well organized and focused on standards-based instruction with a creative flair.
The school’s improved state testing results, known as CAASP scores, have been “primarily due to Baldovin’s insistence that are juniors be provided the fundamental interim practice and instruction needed to develop confidence and achieve success,” he said.
Holly Bigelow, PRHS Athletics Clerk, was also celebrated at the event as the 2017 Classified Employee of the Year.
Bigelow has served since 2013 at the school. Assistant Principal Tom Harrington credited her in front of the audience as being “the happiest person I have ever met” and a team member who has made a loving and effective difference in school and office culture.
Bigelow said she enjoys her work and the people of PRHS and is grateful to work in the same district that as her children–Brooke Bigelow is a sophomore and Alex graduated in 2016. Bigelow’s husband DJ, who died in October 2015, led PRHS volleyball as coach for 10 years.