Appreciates Crystal Apple coverage
       I want to thank you for writing the article on Lesa Finger [in the April 15 Westside Pioneer], one of five Crystal Apple recipients this year! Crystal Apple is a teaching excellence award in School District 11 and as a Westsider, I am quite pleased that three of the five recipients this year are from the Westside.
       The nomination of a teacher for a Crystal Apple Award is quite extensive. Each nomination is a book of at least 25 pages that supports the answers to six questions that examines how the teacher provides for individual differences of students and builds an atmosphere that is both conducive and motivating for the students. The questions also look at how the teacher prepares the students to be productive, contributing members of society. The teacher must demonstrate professional leadership and contribute to a positive school/parent/ community partnership. Judges from the community, who have no ties to School District 11, spend many hours reviewing the books to determine which nominees will be recipients. Each recipient is presented a beautiful Crystal Apple Award and a grant of $500 at a dinner honoring them during Teacher Appreciation Week.
       Thank you for sharing with your readers what outstanding teachers we have in our schools.

Barbara Harris
Chairperson, Crystal
Apple Teaching
Excellence Award