Two FHSD Teachers Receive Emerson Excellence in Teaching Award

Posted on 10/16/2020
Emerson Excellence in Teaching Award

FHSD teachers Lorri Richardson and Tonya Longmore join an elite group of St. Louis-area educators selected to receive the 2020 Emerson Excellence in Teaching Award. This award recognizes teachers for their passion for education, their impact on student learning, and their knowledge and creativity in the classroom. The recipients are chosen for their outstanding contributions to the teaching profession and to the students they teach.

Tonya Longmore has worked in FHSD for 10 years and currently teaches at Castlio Elementary. During the District’s temporary COVID-related closure this spring, Longmore took on the role of being a virtual teacher. She adapted lessons using a variety of technology and methods. As students returned for the 2020-21 school year, Longmore volunteered to take on a virtual fourth grade class. She embraced the challenge of virtual learning with a positive attitude and belief in all of her students and families.

“Tonya works tirelessly for each of her students, advocating for their needs and adapting to meet all students where they are at,” said Castlio Principal Tim Scholle.

As the building’s Information Technology Specialist, Longmore initiated Professional Development prior to the 2020-2021 academic year to prepare the entire staff in case of a full switch to virtual learning.

“She is an amazing teacher and an amazing leader in our building,” shared Scholle. “She is so deserving of this recognition.”

Lorri Richardson has been part of the Bryan Middle School community for 22 years and FHSD for 26 years. She currently teaches eighth grade U.S. History. Throughout her time at Bryan, she has served as the professional development trainer for McRel’s instructional strategies and has led PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) work in the building and in the development of the school improvement plan. She currently serves as the leader of Bryan’s Character Crew.

Richardson has led learning around educational equity and has sought out changes in practices to ensure Bryan Middle moves towards cultural proficiency and continues to model unconditional acceptance of students and members of the community.

“Through her teaching, she provides students with not only the content of U.S. History, but also the courage to speak up against the majority, the confidence to be a part of a much-needed movement, and the skills needed to articulate and defend their stance,” said Principal Suzanne Leake. “Mrs. Richardson is very deserving of this recognition as she models what it means to be a true difference maker.”

The Emerson Excellence in Teaching Awards program, sponsored by Emerson, recognizes more than 100 educators each year in the St. Louis metropolitan area – from kindergarten teachers to college professors – who are examples of excellence in their field.

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