Local teachers being recognized with ‘Above and Beyond’ award


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Teachers all over KELOLAND are going out of their way and putting in long hours to make sure students are learning from a distance right now. The Sioux Falls Public Schools Education Foundation is recognizing their hard work through a new “Above and Beyond.”

All City Elementary fifth-grader Braylon Erickson is comfortable learning from home and it’s all thanks to his teacher Kayleen Lundquist.

“I nominated my teacher because she means a lot to me. She’s always there when I need help with my schoolwork. I really like that because it’s really nice to have a teacher there helping with all your stuff,” Erickson said.

Erickson’s family nominated Lundquist and All City third grade teacher Eliza Leloux for the “Above and Beyond” award through the foundation.

“All teachers are putting in the extra time and trying to make it as easy as possible for kids to transition into this unique remote learning time. I know they’re all going above and beyond,” Leloux said.

Anyone can nominate any staff member in the school district with a $25 donation to the Sioux Falls Public Schools Education Foundation. The nominations are posted on the foundation’s Facebook page and the teacher is entered to win a local gift card.

“It’s a small way for us to thank them, to show our appreciation and to lift them up. It has been so fun to celebrate these teachers,” Struck said.

Allison Struck is the executive director of the foundation.

Holsen: Tell us what the foundation helps out with.

Struck: We focus on our teacher grants. Every first-time, first-year teacher gets $200 from the foundation to buy materials to equip their classroom.

Wherever that classroom may be.

“Yes we do our Zoom calls and we do as many as we can but it’s just not the same as being in person and getting those daily hugs and high fives and seeing their smiling faces. So I know that we all miss them very, very much,” Leloux said.

And the students feel the same way.

“Keep it up teachers. You’re doing a wonderful job,” Erickson said.

On top of the first-time teacher money, the education foundation will start giving out $100,000 in grants to teachers next week for engaging and innovative materials they can use in the classroom.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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