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CSD Principal, Teachers, Volunteer Receive Golden Apples

  • Post category:General News
  • Post last modified:July 8, 2013

A Canyons District principal, two teachers and a parent were recently honored with PTA/KUED Golden Apple Awards for their dedication to schools and service to children. They are: 

McKay Robinson
Golden Apple Award for Outstanding School Administrator

Lone Peak Elementary Principal McKay Robinson is known for his student-oriented approach to running a school. Robinson knows all 850 Lone Peak students by name, plays sports with the children at recess, holds monthly birthday lunches, and – rain or shine – greets families on the sidewalk every day before school. Robinson also is dedicated to increasing student achievement. Under his leadership, Lone Peak, which also is home to a Mandarin Chinese-English Dual Immersion Language Program, has seen test scores improve across the board. Robinson is a stickler for safety, and at a recent PTA meeting, parents were touched when he told them, with tears in his eyes, that he’d do anything he could to keep their children safe. Said his nominator: “The students and parents at Lone Peak Elementary are very fortunate to have such an amazing principal.”

Bill Mattingly
Golden Apple Award for Outstanding Educator

When audiences experience a concert at Alta High School, Bill Mattingly wants them to forget where they are. “When I’ve made people forget that they are at a high school production, then I feel I have done my job,” said Alta’s Director of Instrumental Music. “I feel that we always need to strive to sound professional. I know that these are ‘just high school kids,’ but the music demands more. It pushes me to be a better conductor, and therefore, I push them to be more.” Mattingly has been described as an educator who cares deeply about his students’ success. “He has the amazing gift of seeing the music potential in high school students,” Alta PTSA President Lori Pathakis said. “For those who want to go on professionally, he pushes them to their limits. Those who just want to play, he pushes them to higher levels.” Mattingly’s students have been nominated as best in state by the Utah Opera Company, won first place at the Peak Jazz Festival, and received superior ratings at regional and state levels. He is assembling Canyons’ first-ever districtwide marching band this summer.

April Humphries
Golden Apple Award for Outstanding Educator

April Humphries’ class is the one to be in at Silver Mesa Elementary School. She is beloved by her students, and is known for making learning fun, for teaching students that they can accomplish anything, and for creating an environment of acceptance. Or, as she puts it: “If you’re not a little weird, you are no fun at all.” But Humphries is no pushover. The educator of 25 years upholds high expectations for student achievement. She encourages them to participate in before- and after school programs, including math club, choir, Student Council, and Junior Achievement. She reaches out to parents by sending weekly student progress reports, welcoming them as volunteers, and hosting literacy nights to show them how to help their children at home. Says Humphries: “My goal is to light the spark that will help each (student) in their journey leading to a successful life.”

Linda Duffin
Golden Apple Award for Outstanding Volunteer

Linda Duffin is the kind of volunteer who sees what needs to be done, rolls up her sleeves and goes to work. Starting 15 years ago when her oldest child started kindergarten, Duffin began working in school-volunteer capacities – and she hasn’t taken a break since. She’s been the President of Crescent View Middle’s PTSA, as well as the School Community Council chairwoman, and has dedicated much time and effort to Alta High’s PTSA Student Club. Duffin has been the driving force behind the Hawk Hero program, which recognizes student excellence, and largely because of her efforts, students have been able to participate in Red Ribbon Week, Battle of the Bands, Reflections, and fund-raising and membership drives. Students are effusive with praise: “She is awesome! She gives all her time to help with school activities,” says one student. “Taking care of the PTSA is a hard job,” said another student. “It takes a lot of time and commitment, and she has done really well and makes it worthwhile.”

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