A teacher at USD 230’s Wolf Creek elementary was named as the Horizon Award winner last fall.
In October, Hannah Ozier, Wolf Creek first grade teacher, was named the elementary Horizon Award district winner for USD #230. On Jan. 6, 2016 Ozier received the call from Dr. Randy Watson, commissioner of education, to congratulate her on being named a State Horizon Award winner.
Ozier’s dedication to her students is obvious to all who know her. She states, “One of my favorite things about teaching is simply just being with my students each day. I love to see how much they change and grow over the course of a year and to see their excitement for learning. “
Though the academic side of school is very important to Ozier, she has an even greater goal for her students. “My goal is to help students to be kind, caring individuals who enjoy school and challenge themselves to learn more each day.”
Ozier’s principal, Michelle Hackney, notes that Ozier teaches to the whole child. “ Miss Ozier has a heart and understanding for the learning needs of all students. She creates an atmosphere where students of all abilities are able to get instruction designed to support their learning and individualized needs. We are so proud to have Hannah on our team.” WCES Instructional Coach, Darcy Sly adds, “It only takes one visit to Hannah’s classroom to see her passion and desire for each child to be successful.  She makes it a priority to teach the whole child and does this by taking a personal interest in each and every one of them.”
As the daughter of a school psychologist and a teacher, Ozier has been surrounded by educators who have a desire to serve students. She had numerous volunteer experiences with children prior to attending Kansas State University where she graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education with a Spanish Concentration. Prior to joining Wolf Creek Elementary as a first grade teacher, Ozier was a paraprofessional in the LIFT and FOCUS programs in two Blue Valley elementary schools working with students with significant learning and physical needs.
The Horizon Award is given to teachers for exemplary performance during their first year in the classroom. Each year the district honors two teachers, one at the elementary level and one at the secondary level. District-level winners, have the opportunity to compete in the Kansas State Department of Education’s Horizon Award Program. This initiative provides each Kansas school district with the opportunity to encourage, recognize, and reward new members of the profession. The mission of the program is to recognize exemplary first-year teachers who perform in a way that distinguishes them as outstanding.