The O’Fallon School District 90 Board of Education “Hophouse Teacher of the Month” was awarded to Mary Jane Hilden, a teacher at Marie Schaefer Elementary School.
She has been an educator for 21 years, with many of those years being in District 90. Hilden taught RTI, fourth, second, and first grade and is finishing up her teaching career in kindergarten. Before moving into education, Hilden was a registered nurse for 19 years.
“She genuinely has a desire to help, whether in nursing or teaching. She is an inspiration to others through her dedication and passion for teaching,” administrators said in her nomination. “Her classroom is engaging and creative.”
During her career, Hilden has hosted several student teachers/observers and has served on the Student Assistant Team at Schaefer. She launched and managed the Schaefer After School Tutoring program since its inception. She engaged High School students in volunteering on a weekly basis to tutor students.
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“I have never known a finer nor more dedicated teacher. There is always something fun and exciting going on in her room. I often visit to see the eager faces ready to learn,” said Tracy Principal Duggins.
The Hophouse Support Staff Member of the Month award was given to Diane Henson, detention supervisor at Fulton Junior High School.
“What ever the need, Mrs. Henson will stop at nothing to take care of and assist the students and staff at Fulton. As the discipline enforcer, she ensures the students follow the rules and more importantly, learn from the choices they made. Although her position is associated with behavior management, the students respect her and understand she expects only the best from them. It is not uncommon to see Mrs. Henson sitting one-on-one with students to help them with their homework, talk through a problem, or just offer a listening ear. Mrs. Henson is much more than a detention supervisor, she is a positive influence on our students, a support to both staff and administration, and an important member of our Fulton family,” her nomination said.