Arminda Aguilar Received 2018 Pioneer Valley Excellence in Teaching Award
Posted On:
Tuesday, January 30, 2018
Mindy Aguilar
Mindy Aguilar

CONGRATULATIONS to Arminda (Mindy) Aguilar on being selected to receive the 2018 Pioneer Valley Excellence in Teaching Award. Aguilar has been a dedicated 1st grade teacher at East Street School for twenty-five years. Prior to her teaching career she was a volunteer with the United States Peace Corps, in Nicaragua, for two years.

With her 1st grade students excitedly sharing congratulatory hugs with their teacher, Aguilar quietly expressed her gratitude for being chosen for this award. "I am sincerely grateful for being the recipient of such an honor. It is humbling to be recognized for doing the work that I love." 

Aguilar’s positive influence extends far beyond the classroom. Over the years, she has volunteered on numerous committees, including the instructional leadership team, safety and grievance committees, is an enthusiastic and ever present volunteer at family and community events at the school, volunteers at a local nursing home and has taught CCD classes at her local parish.

Aguilar’s dedication to her students is evident in the frequent contacts she makes with parents to discuss student needs and progress. She can often be found before and after school in her classroom on the 2nd floor creating assignments and planning lessons tailored to all of her students.

Each year, Aguilar’s student writing prompts are commonly recognized among her first grade colleagues as the gold standard against which to compare their own. Her art of teaching makes  it appear effortless, but her fellow teachers who do this same work know just how much time and effort she puts into the dynamic and effective lessons she delivers each day.

“Having been a student teacher in Mindy's class, I can tell you that she is truly a master teacher who is able to simultaneously set high standards for students, while meeting individual student needs in achieving those standards,” commented Deborah Donovan, 1st grade East Street teacher.

“She is always keenly tuned-in to her students varying and individual needs,” continued Donovan. “Mindy is extremely well prepared, knows her material, and is able to turn on a dime, to modify a lesson based on her students needs and results.”

“Mindy is a dedicated educator who always does what's best for her students;  frequently meeting with struggling students before school to offer extra intervention time,”  shared East Street Principal, Thomas Welch. “She mentors younger teachers, and is a valuable member of both her grade level team and the school’s instructional leadership team. Mindy never hesitates to help out, whether it's translating for a non-english speaking parent or volunteering for our family nights. Mindy epitomizes what it means to receive this recognition.”

“I feel very blessed to work alongside her each day,” said Donovan of her colleague and friend. “Without even realizing it, she inspires me to be my best, offers helpful and effective advice, and is always ready to share a laugh and help keep things in perspective.”



 Dr. Gazda, Ms. Mindy, Mr. Welch

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