Lindley Schmitt receives Teacher of the Year Award

Zoë Evans-Agnew, Editor

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Lindley Schmitt smiles big after receiving the TOY award. Photo courtesy of Craig Coovert

On May 17, junior Jenny Hagle said in her speech about the Teacher of Year that this person, “Pours her heart and soul into everything she’s involved in.” This sentiment exemplifies what it means to be an exemplary educator, and is extremely true about Lindley Schmitt who was chosen to receive this coveted award this year.

The Elizabeth Kelley Exemplary Teacher Award is awarded annually to a teacher who performs well beyond his/her job description and fully embraces Jesuit ideals. In her 12th year at Bellarmine Prep, Schmitt has fulfilled these requirements and continues to add academic stimulation and a sense of community to the Bellarmine environment.

The award began in 1986 after a grandmother of two Bellarmine alums decided to create a fund that would further excellence in education. Each year, students, faculty , staff and parents submit nomination forms on specific teachers that have been an influential part of their Bellarmine experience. A committee then meets to discuss possible candidates and selects one nominee to receive the award. Besides the honor of receiving the award, the nominee also receives a stipend of $1500 that helps him or her further his or her own education and also enriches the classroom environment.

Schmitt has the honor and responsibility to teach some of the most challenging classes at Bellarmine, including AP Calculus, but she never fails to make the material accessible and exciting to understand.

In Hagle’s speech she remarked, “Not only does she go the extra mile in the classroom, but she also sets aside time out of her busy schedule before and after school to further help students who are confused about the lesson.”

Head of Ohana crew, which promotes school community, Schmitt works hard to ensure that Bellarmine continues to be a warm and welcoming place. She plans events for students to enjoy like the recent Spring Wing Ding in which a hot wing eating contest had students competing for most hot wings consumed. She also helps plan prom every year, diligently meeting months before the actual date to insure that food is served and the dance floor is ready.

Students who nominated Schmitt for the award also noted her excellent relationship with them, saying that she cares about her students as people, not just learners. Schmitt actively tries to maintain a relationship with her students beyond graduation and is always down to have a life chat.

Hagle summed up Schmitt’s contributions to Bellarmine best when she said, “She serves as a true example of Christ in pouring your full self out for others and expecting nothing in return.”

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Lindley Schmitt receives Teacher of the Year Award