Guidance Counselor at Governor Wolf School Earns Klopp Award
Each year, the education department of Cedar Crest College presents an award to recognize excellence in teaching—The Howard L. Klopp Exemplary Teacher Award. The 2012 Award recipient is Jean Donegan Vrabel, a guidance counselor at Governor Wolf Elementary School in Bethlehem Area School District.
Faculty members from the College’s education department—including Program Chair Nancy King, Ed.D., Associate Professor Jill Purdy, Ed.D., and Instructor Joan Kern, M.Ed.—presented the framed award certificate and a gift to Vrabel during an assembly program at Governor Wolf School on November 16.
She was nominated for this prestigious honor by Jodi Sponchiado, Ph.D., principal at Governor Wolf School. In the letter of nomination, Sponchiado said: “Mrs. Vrabel is the type of educator who truly believes in the education of everyone—students, parents, and her colleagues. She is committed to the education of the whole child, including their health and well-being outside of the educational setting.” The nomination was accompanied by letters of support from parents and other teachers in the school.
Vrabel was excited to receive the award for her work at the school very near to where she grew up, and at which she attended kindergarten.
“It was a wonderful surprise. It’s nice to get recognized for something you truly enjoy doing,” said Vrabel, who said the local Donegan Elementary School is named after her family, which has long been supportive of education. “The kids are wonderful and to get to see them every day is great. They are delighted with the littlest and most unlikely things.”
According to the Cedar Crest education department, this year’s winner exhibits all of the qualities that meet the selection criteria for the Exemplary Teacher Award: a devotion to quality in education; the ability to focus on each student's strengths; a commitment to helping students achieve their full potential; concern for the students that extends beyond the classroom; outstanding service to school and community; and dedication to helping colleagues and advancing the profession.
The Howard L. Klopp Exemplary Teacher Award is presented in memory of Howard L. Klopp, a former education professor and chair of the education department at Cedar Crest. Teachers in the elementary, middle and secondary schools in Lehigh and Northampton counties are eligible.