Affton Names 2020-2021 Teachers Of The Year

Affton Names 2020-2021 Teachers Of The Year
Posted on 04/23/2020
Ray Crites, seventh-grade math teacher at Rogers Middle School, has been named Affton School District’s 2020-2021 Teacher of the Year.

At an awards ceremony held online on April 22, Crites was awarded the honor. Each Affton school also named a Teacher of the Year for their building. They include Erica Grissom for Affton Early Childhood; Kathleen Pence for Mesnier Primary; Gayle Peach at Gotsch Intermediate; Crites at Rogers Middle; and Mary Beth Merlo at Affton High School.

“Even though we couldn’t come together in person this year, it is always rewarding to celebrate our colleagues being recognized for their contributions to the profession,” said Dr. Travis Bracht, superintendent. “I am inspired by Ray’s ability to reach students where they are while forming lasting relationships with each of them. I am confident that he will represent the best of Affton.”

Crites has been teaching in Affton for 21 years. On the application for Teacher of the Year, a colleague of Crites states, “Students who have struggled and disliked math all of their life walk into Mr. Crites’ room and he gives them a fresh breath of air. He makes them believe they can and will be successful. It is rare that a teacher is able to change students' opinions of themselves when they feel incapable of learning. In addition, students appreciate his belief that every day is a new chance to succeed. Students know that they are always given a new opportunity to reach their full potential.”

“I try hard to teach that a failure is only a temporary setback,” says Crites. “Developing grit to continue trying to solve a problem is so important. Trying is so important. But are you willing to try again? I demonstrate the process in front of my students as I problem-solve with them.”

Grissom, the Affton Early Childhood Teacher of the Year, has been teaching in the Affton School District for eight years and is currently a Pre-K teacher.

Pence, the Mesnier Primary School Teacher of the Year, has taught in the Affton School District for five years as a second-grade teacher. 
 
Peach, the Gotsch Intermediate School Teacher of the Year, is a Special School District (SSD) teacher and has been in the Affton School District for seven years.
 
Merlo, the Affton High School Teacher of the Year, is a Special School District (SSD) teacher and has been in the Affton School District for over 10 years.
Website by SchoolMessenger Presence. © 2020 Intrado Corporation. All rights reserved.