Teacher of the Month
Winona Radio's 5 stations and St. Mary's University are putting the spotlight on our local teachers and we are giving them some prizes too.

We are looking for teachers who inspire our kids and deserve to be recognized.  If you know a teacher who is the best of the best tell us all about it by nominating a teacher.

Our monthly winners will receive a prize from:


Fill out the online nomination form

The teacher needs to work in a 40 mile radius of Winona.
We will pick the first winner on October 6th and then the 1st Monday of every month thereafter until May 4th, 2015.
We will post the winner each month on our website.
April Teacher of the Month
Mary Hoiland, 4th grade teacher at Rushford-Peterson, was nominated by Ruby Oain.

 Here is what Ruby:
"Mary has been a dedicated teacher for over 40 years and although she has recently retired she has been called back for long term sub positions twice in her first year of retirement. She returned to the classroom with energy and positive attitude that has been her persona for all of her years of teaching. She teaches with her heart and mind even though she has battled back surgery and macular degeneration. Her students love her as she always gives more than is asked of her. She even wrote a play that has become tradition in her classroom. Her year-end reports of each student reflects their strong points of learning and character. The education world has been enriched because of Mary and her love of teaching and of students..no matter what their ability level. Your group of honored teachers will be honored to have her included in the group."
March Teacher of Month
Mrs. Conway, 2nd grade teacher at W-K in Winona, was nominated by Theresa Sadler.

 Here is what Theresa:
"Mrs. Conway has brought out a competitive side in my daughter,Savannah. Savannah is always striving to achieve the highest marks in school but also to be a great friend and classmate. Mrs. Conway has a way of making each child in her classroom feel special and important. She takes the time to listen and hear what each child has to say. As a parent, it really warms my heart to have my daughter come home from school and gush about the "cool" things her teacher did that day. I know when Savannah gets on the bus in the morning, she's headed to a place where she loves to go and soaks up every little tidbit of knowledge. Thank you Mrs. Conway for being simply amazing!! We love you."
February Teacher of the Month
Joanne Agrimson, English language arts teacher at Rushford-Peterson Middle School, was nominated by Caitlyn Spitzer and Elllie Dahl.

 Here is what they wrote:
"My teacher has helped me get my English skills about 100 times better. She is always cheerful in class and makes kids happy even if they are having a rough day. Mrs.Agrimson makes school fun and more exciting to go to in the morning. I know myself and many of her other student are going to miss her dearly after she retires once this year is over. I will carry the skills she taught me forever. She doesn't just teach us skills in English but she teaches us things we are going to know in life as we get older. "
January Teacher of the Month
Mrs. Paszkiewicz,  Pre-K 4 teacher at St. Martin's, was nominated by Mason Kiekbusch.

 Here is what Mason wrote:
"Mason is my Grandson and talks about his pre k-4 teacher Mrs. P all the time. He says she is the best teacher in the world. You can see the kids just beam when she is around, One day Mason and I were walking and he picked a dandiline and said I want to give this to Mrs. P. All the kids call her Mrs P. for short. I told Mason about your contest and he was very excited to enter her for the Teacher of the month, He also told me "Mrs. P. smells nice grandma" Thank You Mrs. P for all you do for these little ones they love you!"
December Teacher of the Month
Jane Menke,  4th grade teacher at St. Stan's, was nominated by Allyssa Williams.

 Here is what Allyssa wrote:
"Mrs. Menke is the BEST teacher in the entire universe! She cares about me and my classmates and she understands that we are young, so she doesn't overwhelm us with lots of homework. Mrs. Menke is generous, caring, loving, helpful, understanding, and a lot more. Mrs. Menke is so amazing, that it is impossible to put everything into words. If we don't fully understand something, she is very patient and takes the time to explain it to us until we do understand. She also gives us little sweet treats every day (yum, yum). She even gave me and my classmates a loaf of homemade bread to take home for Thanksgiving. Attached to the bread was a note that said "I am thankful for Allyssa." I love that she cares for every student both in and out of the classroom. She always listens to us and allows us to say what we are thinking and she never cuts in or judges us. Before Mrs. Menke became a teacher at my school, she volunteered her time there. She was there the whole day and didn't get paid. She also volunteers her time at the Lewiston Vet Clinic. Her heart is like a diamond, nothing can scratch it and it is always shining, just like her. She is the most amazing teacher I have ever had. There are parents that refer to her as "Saint Jane" because she is so amazing and wonderful. This is why the BEST teacher in the whole wide world is Mrs. Menke and that is why I am nominating her for teacher of the month. I actually think she is the best teacher ever and deserves to be teacher of the year!"

November Teacher of the Month
Kathryn Wade,  math teacher at Winona Senior High School, was nominated by Lydia Jaworski.

 Here is what Lydia wrote:
 "Mrs. Wade is by far the most influential teacher I have ever experienced. When I entered 9th grade, she was my teacher for Algebra. Not only was I struggling in the class... I was struggling a lot with being bullied and I was having a really hard time believing in myself. When I entered Mrs. Wade's room every day, I knew I was in the company of someone who truly cared about me. It is a teacher's responsibility not only to educate their students, but to protect them from harm and to keep them on a safe path. She did exactly that. When I stepped into her room, I felt safe. She had concern for me not only in an educational sense, but she genuinely wanted to know how I was doing. She made a sincere effort to make each one of my days better. I was unable to attend school for a week during my senior year due to some health issues. When I returned, she did not ridicule me or make me feel foolish for missing so much material. She simply took me under her wing and calmly taught me what I had missed. Her main concern was on my health as she reassured me that what I missed in class would not cause my grade to suffer. Kathryn Wade is the most sincere, empathetic, understanding and loving teacher I have ever encountered in my educational career. Even now that I have graduated high school, whenever we contact one another she shows me the same love and compassion that she always has. High school is a difficult stage in many peoples lives. Mrs. Wade shows each of her students unconditional love and understanding in a time when they need it most. In my eyes, she is the teacher that all instructors strive to be. She deserves to be teacher of the month, year, and millennium in recognition for all the lives that she has touched.
October Teacher of the Month
Gina Johnson,  1st & 2nd grade teacher at Dakota Area Community STEM School, was nominated by Amber Scott.

 Here is what Amber wrote:
 "Gina is instrumental in the continued development of DACS.  She has fought to keep enrollment high along with teaching her class.  Gina goes above and beyond for her students and the families at DACS.  She keeps her classroom fun and engaging so the children are enjoying learning.  She is a huge fundraiser for the school.  She heads up the fundraisers and gets parents involved."

September Teacher of the Month
  Mrs. Molly Walker, 1st grade teacher at St. Stan's Elementary, was nominated by Becky Brewer.

 Here is what Becky wrote:
 "Mrs. Walker has shown so much support for our son Hamilton as he is in the running for a chance to win a trip to  NYC to meet Martha Stewart. She values hands-on experiences for the kids so has gotten the whole class and the  whole school involved in Hamilton's cooking aspirations. I credit her for the Winona Daily News doing a front page story on my son yesterday. His confidence has been boosted and his classmates have learned a lot about healthy eating and following their dreams because of her. Only 1 month into the school year but we think she is fantastic! His reading, writing, spelling and math skills have already improved. We feel very luck to have her teach our son!"