Colleagues, friends, and former students have many descriptors for Stephanie Glanz: mentor, angel on Earth, the teacher’s teacher, role model, inspiration, and so many more.
On Saturday night, during the 28th annual “Cox Presents: A Salute to Teachers” awards show, Glanz earned one more title: San Diego County Teacher of the Year. Others honored included Sesha Haynes, Jose Villegas, Melissa Moreno, and Katie Wu.
“This is an exceptionally dedicated and talented group of educators,” said County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Paul Gothold. “While each has unique qualities that helped bring this recognition, they all believe in the power of connecting with students and community.”
“We are thrilled for Stephanie, Rose Elementary, and our district,” Superintendent Dr. Luis Ibarra said. “The County Teacher of the Year program has gained in Stephanie an excellent ambassador for the importance of local education. We could not have been prouder to have our district represented in the countywide competition by both Stephanie and Danielle, two outstanding educators whose dedication knows no bounds.”
Glanz was humbled by the announcement at the Balboa Theatre. “I am so very proud to represent the amazing educators in the Escondido Union School District,” she said. “This is an amazing honor. No individual accomplishment ever happens without inspiration from incredible people. In my career, I have been truly blessed with the most amazing students, families, and colleagues. It has been a wonderful journey and I am truly grateful.”
Glanz’s connection to the school community is strong. She is a proud product of the district and teaches in the Rose classroom where she sat as a 2nd-grader. She began her career at EUSD as a speech pathologist, and has since taught kindergarten and 1st grade at Conway, Rock Springs, and Reidy Creek before transferring to Rose six years ago.
She is well-known for developing lifelong relationships with students, families, and fellow teachers.
“There is no limit to the time Stephanie will spend to do whatever is necessary to provide her students with the opportunity to feel safe and loved,” Deputy Superintendent Leila Sackfield said. “Hundreds of families and children have been the recipients of her gifts of food, shelter, transportation, clothing, and other enriching opportunities. Her generous heart simply can’t bear to see any child or family remain in need. Countless numbers of them have returned to express their gratitude.”
Gifted and humble, Glanz has positively impacted hundreds of teachers across EUSD and beyond, Sackfield added. “Her depth of knowledge in all aspects of education is a tremendous asset to our district. Stephanie is most deserving of this recognition as a County Teacher of the Year.”
Glanz also coaches the school’s Girls on the Run team, supports Rose’s Ignite dance team, and she has forged a connection with a local veterans group that interacts with her students. Glanz never stops learning herself, and she never stops giving.
EUSD serves more than 15,300 students in preschool through 8th grade at 23 campuses in the city of Escondido.
The annual Academy Awards-style show – which was telecast live by Cox Communications from the Balboa Theatre – celebrates San Diego County’s 22,000 public school teachers, with a spotlight on 41 Teacher of the Year nominees representing districts in San Diego County. The 2018-19 County Teachers of the Year were selected from among those 41, who were nominated by their districts for their unwavering commitment to students, teaching, and lifelong learning.
The field was narrowed to 10 finalists. The finalists were selected based on student achievement, professional development and community involvement, teaching philosophy, knowledge of current issues in education, promotion and development of the teaching profession, accountability, and ability to serve as ambassadors of education.
The five Teachers of the Year will represent San Diego County in the California Teacher of the Year program. The state winners will be announced later this fall. Since 1974, 171 teachers have been named San Diego County Teacher of the Year. Of those, 22 were named California Teacher of the Year and three went on to be named National Teacher of the Year.
Stephanie Glanz has spent her 33-year teaching career entirely in the Escondido Union School District. Six years ago, she transferred from one of the district’s sleek new campuses to Rose Elementary, a decades-old school whose students mostly come from socio-economically disadvantaged households.
“I never could have imagined how far I would be stretched and changed both personally and professionally,” she said. Her 1st-graders enter the classroom each day to a hug, handshake, or high-five, and immediately become part of a collaborative team. It’s no surprise that her connection to the school community is strong:
Glanz’s classroom is a well-structured and nurturing environment where students feel safe and can thrive. Glanz said her career has been built on developing deep relationships with students and their families. “I want my students to know I’m invested in their success on and off the field. I am always their cheerleader.”