McNeil teachers named H-E-B Excellence in Education finalists

McNeil High School teachers Emily Jensen and Kari Teague are finalists for the H-E-B Excellence in Education Secondary Leadership and Lifetime Achievement Award, respectively.

H-E-B representatives, Round Rock ISD leaders, and McNeil staff surprised Teague and Jensen Tuesday morning in their classrooms with news of the honor. Along with the accomplishment, H-E-B awarded both educators with a $1,000 grant for their classroom and a $1,000 cash prize.

“Emily Jensen and Kari Teague are champions for students, in our District challenging and challenge all students to strive for success and realize their potential,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Steve Flores said. “Teachers like Emily and Kari are integral to the success of our students and our mission to provide students with a world-class education. We are grateful to H-E-B for honoring great educators and to all of our teachers, who are the best in Texas.”

H-E-B selected Jensen as one of five finalists in Texas for the H-E-B Excellence in Education Secondary Leadership Award, which honors teachers with 10 to 20 years in the classroom.

H-E-B selected Teague as one of five finalists in Texas for the H-E-B Excellence in Education Secondary Lifetime Achievement Award, which honors teachers with over 20 years in the classroom.

If selected as the statewide winner, Jensen would receive a $10,000 grant for McNeil and a $10,000 personal prize, and Teague could earn a $25,000 grant for McNeil and a $25,000 personal prize.

“Both Emily Jensen and Kari Teague embody what it means to be a student-centered teacher,” McNeil Principal Courtney Acosta said. “They put their students needs first and focus on how they can help each succeed. It’s their approach to teaching that helps our students succeed in their classrooms and beyond.”

Jensen, who has been teaching for 18 years, has served the McNeil community as a math teacher for the past 11 years. Teague, who has been teaching for 29 years, was recently named 2017 McNeil Teacher of the Year and RRISD Secondary Teacher of the Year. Teague has served McNeil for 18 years as the Aquatic Science teacher and formerly an assistant basketball coach.

H-E-B Excellence in Education Awards finalists will gather in Austin on May 7 to announce the winners.

Photos from the celebration.