Norwalk Catholic School and St. Paul High School are pleased to announce their annual Agnes Stoll Riley Culture of Excellence in Teaching Awards. This award, established in 2019, honors the first Valedictorian of St. Paul High School Agnes Stoll Riley, who worked tirelessly with the Sisters of Notre Dame to receive accreditation by the State of Ohio as a 4 year high school in 1923. Agnes’ high test scores and her excellent research and typing skills were instrumental in their success.
Congratulations to three deserving teachers: High School teacher, Brooke Meyer;5th grade teacher, Amy Weisenberger;3 year old preschool teacher, Jessica Bleile.
Mrs. Meyer teaches American History, Government (including AP), Everyday Law and College History. She is the advisor for the Model UN team and Mock Trial team.She models leadership and collaboration with students learning material in creative ways, such as debates and role-playing as prominent historic figures. She urges the use of technology with students using Power Point presentations, posters, Venn-diagrams, and even creating a history TikTok. Students are expected to learn not only the facts of history, but to explore morality and ethics of historical events; to put themselves in the place of historic figures to explore their motivations. She integrates faith by discussing the impact of the Catholic Church and the faith of historical figures on history. Her nominators note: "In all my years as a fellow teacher, I've admired Mrs. Meyer as an instructor who not only taught the government curriculum well and with enthusiasm, but continues to teach with the same vigor." and "Mrs. Meyer is an incredible woman who helped me realize my dreams and inspired me to go after them."
Mrs. Weisenberger has dedicated 20 years to NCS, sharing her faith with students through stories and memories, and acting as a mentor for strong Christian values. She demonstrates leadership and collaboration, and transcends the curriculum by offering new ideas at staff meetings, and leading events including the Candlelight Christmas Vigil and History/Geography Fair. She created the Birthday Bag project so children in the community could have needed materials to celebrate. Her nominators said. “Mrs. Weisenberger acts as a lead teacher, she is an inspiration to many students, and a valued co-worker. She is very fun to work with and always seems ready to tackle any challenge."
Miss Bleile transcends the curriculum by using creative teaching methods, finding new methods through professional development conferences. This year, she set up a successful year for all 55 students across 3 classes, by establishing open and clear communication with all the parents and students, utilizing technology whenever possible. She facilitates exploration, creation, and play through ever-changing learning centers for her students, teaching through play how to problem solve, think independently, and interact kindly with one another. Miss Bleile acts as a mentor for Christian values helping students have a greater understanding and respect of Jesus. One student noted, "I have Jesus with me all the time. He is in my heart!"
Nominations are made by students, parents, alumni and peers. Guiding factors for candidates include being a mentor for strong Christian values and school spirit, participating beyond required professional development, collaborating with peers and taking on leadership roles. Candidates incorporates new and creative teaching methods, engage students and inspire them to go above and beyond, creatively implement technology in the classroom and curriculum.
Agnes C. Stoll Riley Culture of Excellence in Teaching Award
In 1923, Agnes C. Stoll Riley was the first valedictorian of St. Paul’s new four-year high school. She had assisted the sisters in preparing the criteria needed by the State of Ohio for the accreditation of four-year high schools. After graduating, she taught the 4th grade at St. Paul until she married James Riley and moved to Milan. Many of Agnes’ grandchildren, great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren have and will attended St. Paul.
To empower our teachers to be the best they can be, going above and beyond, emulating our Vision of a Family of Faith, a Culture of Excellence and a Calling to Serve; and supporting our Mission to Develop Disciples of Christ, Promote Academic Excellence, and Foster a Respectful Community.
The following criteria are not meant to be a minimum guideline or requirement, but rather a guide which will encourage nominations and assist the selection committee in designating awards. Focusing first on practical criteria should better enable candidates to achieve the more in-depth application-based criteria.
Applications are accepted from January to April.