GMSD Teachers of the Year
Candace Plaisance, Grades 9-12 (Houston High School)
Ms. Plaisance is a well-loved AP European History & AP US History teacher. Her class environment is heavily focused on respect and collaboration and often allows students to role play famous historical figures.
FUN FACTS ABOUT MS. PLAISANCE:
- She's been in several different bands throughout her life. The last was with on of the English teachers from Houston.
- She has a slight obsession with skincare and makeup. Often seen doing makeup for students for prom, and she used to run the makeup department fro Falcon Footlights.
- She's an excellent snowboarder.
Spencer Nesvick, Grades 5-8 (Houston Middle School)
Mr. Nesvick is a talented musician who began teaching band at Houston Middle School many years ago. Mr. Nesvick is a passionate supporter of the fine arts program and believes that they "are essential parts of a comprehensive education and a healthy school culture".
He goes the extra mile to host after-school help sessions to support students who are auditioning for All-West. Community members can often see his students performing at sporting events, concert festivals, and the local Kroger (during the holidays). He's also brought in top-musical talent to speak with students.
FUN FACTS ABOUT MR. NESVICK:
- Seven of Nesvick's former students are now band directors
- He taught his own brother in high school band
- Was a lifeguard trainer for the Boy Scouts at Kia Kima Scout Reservation
- Conducted a band at Carnegie Hall, performed on his trumpet at Madison Square Garden, and played with the Memphis Jazz Orchestra on Beale Street
Karen Teel, Grades PreK-4 (Dogwood Elementary School)
Ms. Teel serves as the gifted teacher at Dogwood Elementary School. She is an innovative instructor with an eye for detail. Teel sees her position at the school as an "impactful opportunity" in which she does daily, morning, breakfast check-ins with her students. She also volunteers her time teaching in the South Bronx in New York. Other highlights of her work include the annual Envision Project Expo at Dogwood Elementary School.
FUN FACTS ABOUT MS. TEEL:
She is originally from Alabama (WAR EAGLE!)
She is from a family of strong educators and grew up with a love for school
She is an avid Orange Theory member
GMSD Supervisor of the Year
Andy Martin, School Coordinated Health
Though only two years into his position, Mr. Martin has accomplished an extraordinary number of programs for staff and students! From the bike program to monthly staff fitness challenges, we were not surprised when TAPHERD named him their Supervisor of the Year also! Prior to his role in GMSD, he taught PE to young students.
FUN FACTS ABOUT MR. MARTIN:
He has 3 boys ages 8 months to 7 years old (Liam, Luke, and Hayden).
One of his ancestors is Former President James K. Polk.
His dream vacation would be to travel through Ancient Greece to see all the historical landmarks and artifacts.
GMSD Principal of the Year
Jessica Woody, Dogwood Elementary School
All you need is LOVE. Ms. Woody's passion for creating a positive culture is her defining characteristic as a school leader.
Ms. Woody has been working as an educator for twenty-five years. Prior to her three years at Dogwood, she taught social studies, math, and reading for nine years; served as an Instructional Coach for Shelby County Schools; and has spent twelve years as an Assistant Principal at Houston Middle School.
FUN FACTS ABOUT MS. WOODY:
She loves New York City and teaches summer camp at A House on Beekman in the South Bronx each summer.
She was on the game show The Weakest Link.
She cheered on a coed cheer team in high school.
She started teaching at Houston Middle School at the age of 21.
She won a Geography competition in the 11th grade and the prize was a trip to Ireland!