Becky Holmen, current Dean of Students at Yost Elementary and former Westchester Intermediate Special Education Teacher, has been selected as a 2023 Indiana Teacher of the Year (INTOY) Top 25 Finalist.
In the Spring of 2022, Becky was selected as a Duneland School Corporation (DSC) Elementary Teacher of the Year.
Prior to being promoted to Dean of Students at Yost Elementary for 2022-2023, Becky served as a Porter County Education Services (PCES) teacher serving students at Westchester Intermediate School (WIS). During the 2021-2022 school year, she was a fifth and sixth grade Applied Skills teacher supporting students in a self-contained special education classroom. She taught all academic areas to students having a wide range of abilities and behaviors.
In 2013, Becky received her Bachelor of Science in Elementary and Special Education from Ball State University and completed her Master's in Education - Administrative Leadership and Supervision this past May.
The following is background information about Becky while she was still in a teaching position during the 2021-2022 school year:
Becky feels that establishing and maintaining relationships with the parents of her students is one of the most important aspects of her job. The formation of a special education parent group helped build those relationships and was a catalyst for organizing the first Porter County Transition Fair to educate parents and community members about a variety of service agencies for children and adults with disabilities. This event brought parents, general education and special education staff, and administrators throughout the county together for the benefit of special needs students.
Becky also works hard to provide her students with learning opportunities that will help guide them to a path of independence. Her students develop job skills and support the school by collecting recycling every week, preparing the cafeteria daily, and watering plants throughout the school building. Becky also works with general education students at WIS. For the past three years, she served as the WIS intramural volleyball coach and mentors students who need additional support outside of the classroom. These ‘extras’ have given Becky the opportunity to work closely with her WIS general education colleagues to support all students and staff members.
This year, Becky initiated a ‘Staff Member of the Month’ program that recognizes faculty and staff who have supported students in an exceptional way. She also supports the administration and office staff by working with teachers and parents to address attendance concerns at Westchester.
In October of 2021, Becky was recognized as a Kenneth J. Allen Teacher of Excellence, a program that supports Northwest Indiana teachers who go above and beyond for their students. As a special education teacher, she is honored to be nominated for the DSC Elementary Teacher of the Year by the Duneland community and her peers. Becky expressed, “I am truly humbled that my colleagues, students and school community consider me to be such an asset to my school and to them.”
Good luck to Becky Holmen as INTOY draws near to their final selection for the 2023 Indiana Teacher of the Year.