Waller Middle School educator honored with award

Waller Middle School library media specialist Cristin Ashcraft (right) accepts the Oklahoma Middle Level Education Association (OMLEA) Educator of the Year award with Waller Principal Robb Mills. (Photo provided) 

Cristin Ashcraft, Waller Middle School library media specialist, has been named Oklahoma Middle Level Education Association (OMLEA) Educator of the Year. 

Ashcraft received the award at the OMLEA Annual Conference last Friday in Owasso. She was nominated by multiple administrators, including her principal, Robb Mills, and EPS Assistant Superintendent for Secondary Schools Doug Stafford.

Stafford said Ashcraft’s contribution at Waller Middle School makes a difference for all students, as well as her fellow staff members.

“The time and heart that she puts into building students up, recruiting staff and selecting other community members to put in the sweat equity is a testament to her commitment to her middle school, DeWitt Waller,” Stafford said. “Cristin’s role as library media specialist makes up the heart and soul of both student and staff culture.”

Ashcraft, an 18-year veteran of education, has been with EPS since 2009 as a library media specialist. 

"She has been instrumental in bringing innovative programs to Waller Middle School and to the district," said an EPS press release.

Ashcraft serves as the coordinator for Waller’s annual Tedx event, which is the only one hosted by a middle school in the state, and perhaps, the nation. 

"She played a pivotal role in the school’s MakerSpace initiative, and she has presented at statewide and national conferences on topics ranging from technology to literacy," the press release said.

Ashcraft thanked her fellow teachers for helping to make Waller a great place to work and to learn.

“I could not be more humbled or blessed to receive this award,” Ashcraft said. ”I accept it on behalf of all the past and present Waller students, teachers, and staff who have participated and flourished in our many exciting and innovative programs implemented in the past few years. This recognition is the result of a complete Waller team effort.”

Candidates for the OMLEA Educator of the Year award must meet criteria to be nominated for the award: a strong sense of values and professional ethics; an ability to learn new ideas to expand knowledge in the classroom; and possess enthusiasm and dependability while working with students, parents and peers on a daily basis.

Oklahoma Middle Level Education Association is under the umbrella of the Cooperative Council for Oklahoma School Administration. OMLEA works to provide vision, knowledge, and resources to mid-level teachers so they may be able to develop healthy, productive and ethical citizens in the following generations, according to the press release.

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