Affton Names 2017-18 Teachers of the Year

Pictured from left: Janet Peistrup, Laura Pezzani, Colleen Malone, Alison Nixon

Janet Peistrup, reading specialist at Mesnier Primary School, has been named the Affton School District’s 2017-2018 Teacher of the Year.

At an awards ceremony on April 19, Peistrup was awarded the honor. Each Affton school also named a Teacher of the Year for their building. They include: Peistrup for Mesnier Primary; Laura Pezzani at Gotsch Intermediate; Alison Nixon at Rogers Middle; and Colleen Malone at Affton High School.

“It is rewarding when our district comes together to celebrate our colleagues being recognized for their contributions to the profession,” said Dr. Steve Brotherton. “I have always been inspired by Janet’s ability to individualize learning for each of her students, and am confident that she will represent the best of Affton.”

Peistrup has been teaching in Affton for 27 years and holds a Master of Arts in Elementary Education, Missouri Reading Teacher certification and Reading Recovery Teacher certification. On the application for Teacher of the Year, one of Peistrup’s colleagues states, “Mrs. Peistrup is a great colleague to work with. She has a positive attitude, sets goals and accomplishes them. Her impact at Mesnier is not only seen by children, but her colleagues as well.”

Peistrup believes that her most significant professional accomplishment has been the Reading Recovery training she received to focus on each student rather than to follow a program. She explains, “I encourage my students to be ‘risk-takers’ and make attempts using different strategies. I also have to be a risk-taker and try different methods of organizing and presenting lessons, shaping behaviors, and monitoring my students’ learning. Having an open mind and thinking positively about making changes is important in the teaching profession.” She will have the opportunity to compete for the title of Missouri State Teacher of the Year.

Pezzani, the Gotsch Intermediate School Teacher of the Year, has worked in the Affton School District for 12 years and is currently the gifted teacher.

Nixon, the Rogers Middle School Teacher of the Year, has been teaching in the Affton School District for seven years and currently teaches social studies to seventh-grade students.

Malone, the Affton High School Teacher of the Year, teaches Television Production, Creative Film, Creative Communication Arts, as well as Drama courses, and has been in the Affton School District for 11 years.