Connections are key for Mehlville School District’s Teacher of the Year

Connections are key for Mehlville School District’s Teacher of the Year
Posted on 05/07/2020
Jefferson StephensJefferson Stephens, Bernard Middle School teacher, has been named the Mehlville School District Teacher of the Year for the 2019-2020 school year.

Stephens is the sixth-grade Patriot Academy teacher at Bernard. Through the Academy, he teaches a blend of English language arts and social studies. Stephens provides students with opportunities to make connections between content areas, personalize how they learn and demonstrate their mastery of the sixth-grade English language arts and social studies curriculum.

“Mr. Stephens instills his passion for inquiry and learning in his students as he personalizes the classroom to meet their individual needs and unique interests,” Bernard Middle School principal Lauren Cumming said. “He recognizes the value of fostering meaningful relationships with staff and students to drive innovation and change within our Bernard classrooms.” 

Stephens has taught at Bernard Middle School for the past three years. Prior to his work at Bernard, Stephens taught at the Lift for Life Academy. He has a reputation for being a classroom innovator, incorporating inquiry-based and transdisciplinary instruction, project-based learning and technology in his teaching practices.

“Jefferson’s most meaningful work includes the connections he makes with all students and his ability to work collaboratively with colleagues,” Dr. Bresler said. “He has proven to be a lifelong learner who is dedicated, hard-working and innovative. Never settling for mediocre, Mr. Stephens always pushes himself to discover and implement new teaching strategies that will impact student learning everyday.”

Cumming, Bernard assistant principal Erin Kennedy and Assistant Superintendent Dr. Jeff Bresler surprised Stephens at his home with the news during a faculty videoconference today.

“I love Bernard, and I love Mehlville,” Stephens said after the surprise. “I’m lucky enough to have an awesome admin team here to celebrate with me.”

Watch the surprise.

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