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ACS Spotlight on Employees - January 2023

Every month, the ACS Employee Spotlight recognizes both certified and classified employees for their outstanding contributions to the district. These employees are chosen by the school's administrative team for displaying one of the five Portrait of an ACS Graduate tenants: Communicate Effectively, Collaborate Intentionally, Cultivate Creativity, Be Resilient or Lead with Empathy. Congratulations to the following Arlington Awesome employees!

Arlington Elementary
Amy Ellis
Be Resilient

Ms. Ellis serves as one of the multi-talented SPED assistants here at AES. She exemplifies the Portrait of a Graduate by being resilient when faced with multiple daunting tasks and responsibilities. Ms. Ellis has the unique ability to find the silver lining, no matter how murky the waters may be. When she is faced with situations that seem to have little to no resolutions, she works with others to find that solution and will continue to press until a reasonable solution is found. 

Ms. Ellis strives to support, teach, and hold students accountable within the classroom and in all other settings around the school. Her focus and dedication to the SPED students she works with provides those students with a true model of resiliency. Ms. Ellis’s strong work ethic coupled with her ability to self-reflect, allows her to continue an upward trend of growth, flexibility, and a willingness to adapt. 

Thank you, Ms. Ellis, for being the unbreakable willow that is willing to bend and flex to meet the needs of the SPED students here at AES.

Donelson Elementary
Gertrude Marshall-Spencer
Communicate Effectively

Mrs. Marshall-Spencer is the first person at Donelson to welcome new families with open arms to our school. She goes the extra mile to ensure families are prepared to register and to enter school with ease. She truly epitomizes the qualities of communicating effectively. 

In fact, Mrs. Marshall-Spencer is always willing to help out in any area of the school building. She can often be seen helping out with testing tasks, aiding teachers, helping substitutes check in, and running the front office as needed. 

She has a heart of gold and this is evident to everyone who knows her. We are so thankful to have Mrs. Marshall-Spencer at DES and we value her work ethic and kindness.

Arlington Middle
April Stowman
Lead with Empathy

It is with great pleasure and enthusiasm that I recommend Ms. April Stowman for our SPOTLIGHT Award! As a special education assistant at our school, she has worked with our functional skills students for 15 years. She has been observed by admin and faculty building relationships with her students and families and ensuring that all are welcome at AMS. Without her hard work and passion, our students would not have the same amazing experience at AMS.

In addition to helping in the special education classroom, Ms. Stowman is also a key organizer of our “happy hands” club at AMS, which teaches students sign language. She also helps out wherever and however is needed on a daily basis. She makes copies, monitors students and helps our school by befriending and helping students in crisis. She memorizes the schedules of students who are not even in her classroom, and in turn, they see her as a role model and friend when they experience anxiety or need a break throughout the day. She is truly an irreplaceable member of our faculty and team. We count on her on a daily basis to provide an A+ experience to some of our most important students and families.

Arlington High
Michelle Perrigin
Cultivate Creativity

When I think of Ms. Perrigin, the word "student advocate" comes to mind. She is constantly looking at ways to challenge her students and for them to think creatively, but she does so with a keenness about what they need at the next level. Digging deep into information and analyzing it critically is so desperately needed by students, and she helps prepare them for the real world in which those talents are needed. The work her students do in AP Seminar, for example, is incredible, and it's driven by her. She sets the conditions that allow them to be creative, problem-solvers and thinkers. 

Ms. Perrigin is also a valuable member of our Leadership Team, and in that role, she's not afraid to tell administrators and fellow teachers what she thinks needs to be done to propel students to higher success. She challenges us to be better and do better, and it's all through the lens of what's best for kids. Her out-of-the-box thinking challenges not only students but all of us to be better administrators and educators. She's a champion for students and a champion for AHS."