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Service Excellence Award
Service Excellence Awards

2023-24 Service Excellence Awards

The UCDSB Service Excellence Awards are a peer-to-peer employee recognition program that was created in the 2015-16 school year. These awards were created to recognize exceptional  service to our students, their families and our co-workers.

A selection committee determines the top nominees following a detailed review of how the nominees demonstrated the UCDSB’s Six Qualities of Service Excellence, showed leadership in the area of service excellence and made an impact within our system.

Nominations for the 2023-24 Service Excellence Awards are open now and will close on Friday March 29, 2024.

Recipients of the 2022-2023 Service Excellence Awards are as follows:


Dara DayeDara Day, Early Childhood Educator, Longue Sault Public School

Dara ensures that all her students are heard and has a way of making each student feel like their thoughts and ideas are the best she's ever heard. She enjoys working with small, guided groups, to enhance their learning and spends time tracking and assessing student learning. Dara and the kindergarten team have been embarking on a 'World Tour' over the last few years, where students learn about different countries around the world. Countries are chosen based on the interests of the students, their family heritage, or a particular holiday.

Chris HannahChristopher Hannah, Principal, Montague Public School

Chris creates a learning environment that thrives on kindness, which allows staff and students to feel seen. He not only greets every individual that he passes by, but he is constantly observing to see where he can help. Chris checks in with families that are going through difficult times and brings them food or connects them with resources. He also supports school-wide events, maintains the school’s Facebook page, and creates a monthly newsletter for families and weekly “Mustang Moment” bulletins for staff.

Alyssa JacksonAlyssa Jackson, Teacher, Rockland District High School

Alyssa creates a culture of care in her classroom by prioritizing the emotional well-being and mental health of her students. She regularly checks in with her students to understand how they are feeling and works to create a safe and supportive learning environment where everyone feels respected and valued. Alyssa tailors her teaching approach to the needs and learning styles of each student, providing personalized support to help them reach their full potential. Alyssa takes the time to research and develop new strategies and approaches to teaching, regularly attending professional development workshops and conferences to stay up to date on the latest research and best practices.

Heather M-HHeather MacGillivray-Houzlet, Educational Assistant, Pleasant Corners Public School

Heather ensures that students that she works with directly, as well as those in the rest of the class, know that they are cared for and that she is always there to help and advocate for them. Heather is always thinking about ways to help. She often comes to work early and stays late to organize the school supply room to see what the school is missing, voluntarily. She creates templates at home and brings in new and fun activities to school for the students to try on a weekly basis.

CarrieCarrie Popplewell, Educational Assistant, Lombardy Public School

Carrie is embedded in the junior-intermediate wing of the school and is the go-to, safe person for many students. She advocates for each student’s personal learning with appropriate and timely coaching and feedback assists in expanding students’ problem-solving skills, both academically and socially. Carrie is also very proactive and her caring and support does not end when the bell rings at the end of the day. There have been many evenings where she has reached out to other staff members about a student who may be in crisis, a family in the school community who may be in need, and brainstorm about how the school can offer support.

Dwayne TrollopeDwayne Trollope, Head Custodian, Glen Tay Public School

Dwayne, or Mr. T as he is fondly referred to, is a valuable colleague, leader, and champion for kids in the school community. Since day one, he has gone above and beyond his regular duties to ensure the school is clean, safe and welcoming to all, while also looking at ways to streamline the school’s daily operations. But what truly sets Dwayne apart is his commitment to the students. He is a friendly face, and students feel seen and heard by him. He respects the students' differences, strengths, and needs, and speaks to them with respect and kindness. Most notably, Mr. T provides opportunities for students who need body-breaks or students who are finished their work to help him tidy rooms or collect recycling.

Katharine WolffKatharine Wolff, Teacher, Carleton Place High School

Katharine strives to make community connections and engage learners in innovative and interesting ways. She isn’t afraid to try new teaching methods or use new technology and she will go out of her comfort zone to create meaningful and interesting lessons. She carefully plans and takes additional qualification courses in related areas so that she is always able to better her teaching and provide more to her students. Katharine recognizes her students have differing skills and interests and selects reading topics and assignments that may be of more interest to the students in her class.

Special Education Administration Team

The dedicated team of SEA Support Assistants Jeanine Bell, Tina Brown and Sherry Kent; Technologists Gerry Doreleyers and Adam Froats; and Special Education Principal Karen Bryan encompass the Six Qualities of Service Excellence in their daily work. The SEA team members work to ensure that the SEA equipment is in the hands of our students with exceptionalities who require it for learning. They connect with thousands of employees each year and their ability to respond to inquiries, requests, packages and referrals is exceptional. Each communication is completed with care and precision to facilitate the acquisition of SEA equipment for UCDSB students.

SEA Team

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