Deer Valley Performing Arts teacher Michelle Stark named Antioch Teacher of the Year

Michelle Stark (with flowers) is congratulated by District Director for Program Improvement, Mike Santos (left), Associate Superintendent of Educational Services, Christine Ibarra, and Deer Valley High Principal Ken Gardner (right) on Wed., March 21, 2018. Photo by AUSD.

On Wednesday, March 21, 2018, Antioch Unified School District Associate Superintendent of Educational Services, Christine Ibarra, Deer Valley High School Administration, and members of the AUSD Educational Services Team congratulated Michelle Stark, the Deer Valley Academy of Performing Arts Lead Teacher, on winning AUSD’s Teacher of the Year.

According to the DVHS website, “Mrs. Stark is in her 10th year at DV and this is the third year she serves as the Lead Teacher for the DVAPA She has four children that graduated from Deer Valley.”

From the DVHS Facebook page:

Michelle Stark

Mrs. Michelle Stark has been a teacher at Deer Valley High School for over ten years. During her tenure, Mrs. Stark has taught Show Choir, Divine Voices, and Production Practicum. During the 2015-16 school year, Mrs. Stark was named DVAPA (Deer Valley Academy of Performing Arts) Lead. Since that time, Mrs. Stark has taken DVAPA from good to great! During her time at DVHS, Mrs. Stark has involved DVHS to engage with both the school and city community. Mrs. Stark arranges student led performances both at DVHS as well as private events where her students are requested.

Mrs. Stark teaches a wide range of students- some come with great experience, while others have no experience singing whatsoever. Mrs. Stark teaches each and every student who enters her classroom and all her students love her for the time, patience, creativity, and passion that she brings each and every day to her classroom. Mrs. Stark positively engages and effectively manages all her students through positive relationships. Walking into Mrs. Stark’s class, you can feel the comradely between the students and themselves, as well as the respect and love they have for Mrs. Stark. Mrs. Stark takes the time to know each of her students in order to know and understand her students’ strengths and weaknesses. Mrs. Stark is able to reach all levels of students and help them build the confidence in themselves, as all her students showcase their talents multiple times throughout the school year.

Since the 2015-16 school year, Mrs. Stark has taught the DVAPA Capstone, Production Practicum. During this time, Mrs. Stark inherited a class that the majority of the students chose to drop midyear, which negatively impacted the number of students completing the requirements of the academy. Mrs. Stark wanted to improve the class and amount of students who completed the academy’s requirements. Mrs. Stark has worked tirelessly, improving DVAPA’s system of organization, as well as student completion (DVAPA has seen a 400% growth in the amount of students completing the academy since 2015). Through Mrs. Stark’s shared vision of work-based learning, she has created on campus internships, while teaming students to work together in a collaborative environment. Students are now responsible for marketing, decorating, advertising, as well as the hours it takes behind the scenes to run a show. Rather than students dropping at the second semester, we have students who are on the waiting list to be added to the class. Mrs. Stark found a way to build a community within the DVAPA academy that has positively impacted students, while giving them the necessary skills they need when seeking employment (team work, communication, problem solving, critical thinking, etc.).

Please join us in congratulating Mrs. Stark for her positive impact and contributions to her academy, our school, and community.

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One Comment to “Deer Valley Performing Arts teacher Michelle Stark named Antioch Teacher of the Year”

  1. […] Michelle Stark, Antioch Unified School District, Deer Valley High School […]

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