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March 5, 2015

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Outstanding rookie teachers honored at School Board meeting


Courtesy of Michele Nelson/CCSD

The Clark County School District’s New Teachers of the Year (l-r): Daniel Cano, Jeffers Elementary School; Alison Zelton, Chaparral High School; Taylor Pfatenhauer, Cimarron-Memorial High School; Chris Reger, Brinley Middle School; Edward Savarese Jr., Sewell Elementary School; and Judith Alfaro, Sewell Elementary School.

The Clark County School Board honored seven New Teachers of the Year on Thursday.

The seven were chosen among a list of 31 nominated by their respective schools for commendable work during their first year of employment with the School District. During the regular board meeting Thursday, district officials played video testimonials from school administrators and students attesting to the hard work and motivation of these new teachers.

The seven New Teachers of the Year for the 2011-12 school year are:

• Judith Alfaro, first-grade teacher at Sewell Elementary School

• Daniel Cano, third-grade teacher at Jeffers Elementary School

• Edward Savarese, fifth-grade teacher at Sewell Elementary School

• Chris Reger, pre-algebra and algebra honors teacher at Brinley Middle School

• Alison Zelton, algebra 1 and geometry teacher at Chaparral High School

• Brad Keating, special education teacher at West Career and Technical Academy

• Taylor Pfatenhauer, special education teacher at Cimarron-Memorial High School

The district accolades come just one week after the School District announced an undetermined number of teacher layoffs after an arbitrator sided with the teachers union in a nearly yearlong contract battle. District officials have warned in the past that up to 1,000 teacher positions could be shed as the district tries to plug a $64 million budget gap.

Although the School District plans to comply with a new state law that would base teacher layoffs on performance first rather than seniority, there are only 38 teachers in the district with a record of disciplinary problems, district officials said. The rest of the layoffs would be based on seniority, officials said.

That means the brunt of the potential layoffs would fall on new teachers. The School District is expected to send out pink slips as early as May 16.

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