Each school year, we like to take the time to shine a spotlight on our SEVA teachers. Our talented SEVA teachers help to develop and implement student skills in incredible ways. We want to honor every teacher who encourages and fosters the passion and talents of their students. Our teachers are committed to making a difference in the life of each and every student. We’ll be updating this page weekly to give each of our SEVA teachers a time to shine!
Brooke Beckett of Galt High School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week excels at leading the media program at Galt High School. Brooke Beckett is able to fuse her passion for technology in to her teaching and help all students learn the skills to create meaningful broadcasts and video projects. Her students become leaders of the school through their “GTV” broadcast, sharing news and updates with the entire community. Her students love to talk about all the video production skills that they learn after just a short time in her class. They also rave about her caring and supportive nature. Likewise, Ms. Beckett loves to see how proud her students become when they have completed a video project. She has worked tirelessly during distance learning to continue to provide media enrichment for her students. She is an outstanding mentor for high school students as they begin to transition into adulthood. Thank you, Ms. Beckett, for showing what students can accomplish with the right set of tools and quality skills.
Jennifer Law of Wilson C. Riles Middle School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week is a champion for media production in her school and district. Jennifer Law has successfully established a thriving media program at Wilson C. Riles Middle School in the Center Joint Unified School District, which is no small feat! She is able to keep her students engaged and creating projects that share their unique perspectives, even during distance learning. Riles students have continued broadcasting school news while at home and have taken advantage of opportunities that they would not have otherwise. Ms. Law’s students are staples of #SEVACON events and always contribute thoughtful questions and comments. Ms. Law always allows space for her students to use their creativity while learning vital skills they can apply in many different ways. It is obvious that her students love having her as a teacher and have benefited greatly from being in her class. Thank you, Ms. Law for showing that working hard for your students is always time well spent.
Brad Augusta of Pacific Elementary School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week is Brad Augusta. Mr. Augusta has been teaching for 22 years and now teaches media at Pacific Elementary School. He encourages students to enjoy the creative process and utilize it to find the best way to express themselves through their media projects. Students focus on brainstorming as a collective so that they can work as a team to find new subjects to explore and use to create content. While there have been hurdles to overcome during distance learning, with Mr. Augusta’s continual support students continue to create media and find a creative space to adapt and find new routes through which to learn and apply their media skills. Even within a virtual setting Mr. Augusta not only inspires his students to find their voice and be creative, but he too is inspired by his student’s abilities to rise above any obstacles they may encounter to continue to learn and share their ideas and passion for media. It is clear that the consistent guidance from Mr. Augusta will instill the ability for his students to continue to think outside the box through not only these times but as they progress on their path in media. Thank you, Mr. Augusta for seeing the potential in every student and motivating them to find their passions so that they can truly share their vision as content creators.
Stephen Smith of American Lakes School
Stephen Smith of American Lakes School in the Natomas Unified School District is this week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week. Mr. Smith introduced his class to the world of media just over a year ago and immediately saw an increase in engagement. Students in his class have a special interest in creating news stories and through his media program he has been able to teach them the skills of investigating and interviewing. His principal points out his ability to naturally infuse technology into the curriculum to keep students learning what they need to know using the right tools. Students point to his supportive, encouraging spirit that keeps them going. Given his special ability to push his students to achieve their best, it’s no surprise that some students know him as “Coach.” He strives to create an atmosphere that welcomes each and every student even during distance learning. Thank you, Mr. Smith, for showing how students can flourish with some technical guidance and encouragement.
Julie Del Agua of Albert Einstein Middle School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week is a true champion for media education and a longtime supporter of the SEVA program. Julie Del Agua teaches media at Albert Einstein Middle School in the Sacramento City Unified School District and has advocated for technology in every role in education she’s held during her long career. She appreciates how media can share student voice beyond the four walls of the classroom and works tirelessly to ensure students have this opportunity. During distance learning, Mrs. Del Agua has helped students expand their worlds further by focusing on the community. Her ability to connect her students to the community has undoubtedly helped them during this time of quarantine. Likewise, her principal credits her with helping the entire student body feel connected to school at a time when that connection is so vitally important. Her students say her kindness and dependability keep them motivated in her class. For many years she has been an active participant in the SEVA program and works to mentor and share her knowledge with fellow teachers. Thank you, Mrs. Del Agua, for inspiring a whole generation of students to share their voice through media.
Sylvia Molina of Sierra Enterprise Elementary School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week is Sylvia Molina of Sierra Enterprise Elementary School in the Elk Grove Unified School District. Ms. Molina has taught for over 20 years, but only recently stepped into the role of media teacher. Once she decided to start the media program at her site, there was no stopping her. Her principal credits her with getting the new program off the ground and giving her students the special experience of sharing their voice through media. The Sierra Enterprise Media Group hasn’t let distance learning hinder them and they continue to virtually meet in order to learn and grow with one another. Ms. Molina has found a silver lining in the world of distance learning in that students are forced to think outside of the box and practice their patience. She truly appreciates when students can share their knowledge with their peers, and she takes time to make sure she learns as much from her students as they learn from her. Her students appreciate how she is able to meet them where they are and help them to learn step by step. Her perseverance is mirrored in her students and they continue to inspire one another with their persistence in the face of challenges. Thank you, Ms. Molina, for your dedication to your students, whether in person or virtually.
Dale Means of Rosemont High School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week has recently brought his creative energy and media expertise to a new school. Dale Means came to the Rosemont High School media program just this fall after a long career teaching media in Sacramento City Unified. Starting off at a new school in a distance learning model isn’t easy, but he made the transition seamlessly and his students appreciate how much being in his virtual classroom feels so much like being in a regular classroom. He finds a way to connect with each one of his students, which takes a special talent in a virtual setting at a new school. He teaches with empathy which allows for students to be seen and feel encouraged to express themselves creatively. His connection with his students has also been a positive light in his own world, and he admits that he is looking forward to the day that he can “meet” the students in real life on the Rosemont campus. He is a true supporter of student expression and encourages his students to be content creators, not just consumers. In sharing their voices, his students have inspired him with their displays of skill, creativity, humor, compassion and perseverance. Thank you, Mr. Means, for showing what can happen when you are a true supporter student vision.
Kristen Kolpacoff of Arlene Hein Elementary School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week paved a path to bring media production to her school through her hard work and dedication. Kristen Kolpacoff of Arlene Hein Elementary School in the Elk Grove Unified School District started with the SEVA program just last year after realizing what a difference it could make to her school. Although she is admittedly no production expert, she has an eagerness to learn that mirrors her students. Together they have successfully kicked off the school’s program and have continued to help it grow even during distance learning. Mrs. Kolpacoff has done so well that she has brought another teacher into the fold and has plans to further infuse the program into her school’s culture and get more students and staff involved. She truly puts the students first in the program and is a true cheerleader for all they do. The excitement of producing videos and entering them into the SEVA contest has brought a special element of fun to her students’ education. She is able to achieve a high level of engagement which is no small feat during distance learning. Thank you, Mrs. Kolpacoff for showing what you can achieve when you never stop learning, even as a teacher!
Tim Youngs of Cosumnes Oaks High School
This week’s SEVA teacher of the week has a long history with the SEVA program that stretches back over 15 years. Mr. Youngs heads up the Broadcast Journalism Pathway at Cosumnes Oaks High School in the Elk Grove Unified School District. 15 years ago Mr. Youngs worked with SECC to set up his first studio, and he’s been going strong ever since. At C.O., his students rely on his constant support to help them on the broadcast pathway, and are able to develop a special bond as he guides them throughout their high school years. He has a special knack for helping his students learn to be responsible for their work and has used distance learning as a way to instill more self-reliance in each one. In a time when student engagement is so critical, he credits his students with keeping the class moving forward daily as they regularly churn out videos from home. Through the school’s broadcast “Wolfpack TV,” his student have continued to provide important news for the entire school community. Additionally, his students are able to be use their creativity to cope with the changing world around them. Thank you, Mr. Youngs, for showing how to inspire your students to keep creating no matter the circumstances.
Cael Kuhlman of Natomas High School
While Mr. Kuhlman is a new SEVA teacher, he is by no means new to teaching as he has just entered his third decade teaching! He is currently teaching in the Digital Arts Pathway at Natomas High School. He quickly jumped into all things SEVA and has contributed much to the group even in his short time. He appreciates that the SEVAs help set a deadline for his students and has given them an opportunity to grow their media skills. His students love his energy and the way he is able to engage them, even during distance learning. It’s clear that he is keeping them engaged, as they continue to create their school’s NTV broadcasts twice a week while students are home. These broadcasts are a vital connection point for Nighthawks to bring them out of isolation and back into the school community. Mr. Kuhlman is quick to try new technologies if it will help his students. NTV was able to provide students a birds-eye view of the new football field even though they haven’t been on campus. Though technology can be challenging during distance learning, Mr. Kuhlman is able to keep students motivated and moving. It’s obvious that all his hard work stems from his sincere desire to share to the joy of media with his students. Thank you, Mr. Kuhlman, for working tirelessly to share your love of media with your students.
Brina Jope of Center High School
It takes a special teacher to be part of the Media Communications Academy (MCA) at Center High School and this week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week is just that. Brina Jope is in her 6th year of teaching and she has truly found her niche at MCA. She piloted the Sports Broadcasting program and has taken on the huge job of providing her students the experience of live sports broadcasting. Students in her classes have a unique role as leaders within the whole school community and take their platform seriously. Ms. Jope loves how teaching media is an immersive educational experience that is unlike any other class on campus. She does an outstanding job inspiring her students to showcase their personalities through media and share their perspective with a wide audience. She shows her dedication to her students by always keeping her students motivated and enthusiastic with her fun energy. During distance learning, she has prioritized the mental health of her students and has given them new projects to help them deal with this difficult time while perfecting their media skills. Thank you, Ms. Jope, for being a true champion for your students.
Scott Southard of Folsom High School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week is Scott Southard from Folsom High School in the Folsom Cordova Unified School District. Mr. Southard has been with the district for 13 years and brings a wealth of knowledge in audio and video production to his teaching. Under his guidance, the Bulldog Bulletin has been one of the longest running high school news programs in the area. Mr. Southard keeps up with the constant changes in technology and works hard to ensure the Folsom High School media program remains current. He never backs down from a challenge while teaching, and because of this his students graduate and head in to the real world with a tremendous head start. It’s easy for him to keep up with the constant changes using the tremendous amount of energy he possesses, a fact that his students always mention. His students also really appreciate the way he supports them, especially during distance learning. His passion for creativity is obvious and he truly helps ignite the creative spark in his students. Thank you, Mr. Southard, for showing what incredible things can happen when you are a creative and energetic teacher.
Jerry Bandy of Pleasant Grove High School
Jerry Bandy of Pleasant Grove High School in the Elk Grove Unified School District is this week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week. Mr. Bandy has the kind of steady patience that really helps students feel safe enough to push themselves to new heights. He excels at teaching leadership and time management skills that students can use not just in his media class, but in all their school subjects. Not only do his students learn these vital skills, they also are able to develop their passion for creativity with his genuine support. Their school broadcast PGTV always contains some truly unique segments that really highlight student voice. He is able to keep expectations high, and the results from speak for themselves. During distance learning, his students continue to reach out and learn more about all things media production, even when they aren’t currently enrolled in his class! He is truly an inspiration to his students and he is able to get them to see new and exciting possibilities for their future. Thank you, Mr. Bandy for being a positive force in the lives of your students.
Dale Patterson of Creative Connections Arts Academy
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week is Dale Patterson from Creative Connections Arts Academy (CCAA) in the Twin Rivers Unified School District. Though he is new to teaching media, he is well versed in the world of media production. In fact, Mr. Patterson himself took home a SEVA while attending Cosumnes River College! His familiarity with the SEVAs, along with a healthy rivalry with fellow CCAA media teacher and SEVA superstar Thuy Pham allowed him to hit the ground running. His students credit him with being a tremendous teacher who can find just the right way to push them past where they thought they could go. Likewise, Mr. Patterson loves witnessing that ‘lightbulb moment’ when students realize they can succeed in ways they never thought possible. He truly appreciates that everyone with a smartphone can be a content creator and that it allows for students to share their authentic voice like never before. After students are taught basic rules of video in his class, they are encouraged to break those rules in new and exciting ways. Thank you, Mr. Patterson, for helping give even the quietest students a voice through media.
Oak Hill Elementary School Media Teachers
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week features a dynamic group of teachers who who work together to make their SEVA program a success. Susan Erickson, Katie Edwards, Patrick Muldoon, and Marci Phillips work closely as a team to help Oak Hill’s media students create incredible videos. Between organizing their school’s newscast, “The Otter Outlook,” and inspiring their students to create imaginative and enlightening videos, each teacher has their own important and unique role that allows them to serve a large group of students and help each one succeed in media. Ms. Erickson is credited with starting the media program at the school, Mr. Muldoon is the technology expert of the group, Ms. Phillips takes the lead on the newscast, and Ms. Edwards is there to help in any way the students need. The collaboration and teamwork that happens at this school is unlike any other! The team spirit doesn’t end there, but is spread throughout the entire Center Joint Unified School District where students can take media skills they learn in elementary school and use them in middle school, high school, and beyond!
Melissa May of Inderkum High School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week is Melissa May from Inderkum High School in the Natomas Unified School District. Mrs. May has sparked the love of journalism in her students in a very special way for over five years. Since transitioning from a long and successful career in journalism to the classroom, she has no doubt altered the course of her students’ lives. Mrs. May works to bring real-world applications into her curriculum through guest speakers and field trips, not to mention her own extensive experience. She goes above and beyond in her broadcast media CTE program to ensure that students transition to successful careers post-graduation. Mrs. May’s students truly light up when they talk about her, and after just one conversation with Mrs. May you can see why. She also spreads her knowledge and positive attitude in her participation in the SEVA teacher group. Always quick to share what she knows and help wherever she can, the entire SEVA community would not be the same without her. Thank you, Mrs. May for sharing your passion with your students, your school, and the entire community.
Dana La Chapelle of Toby Johnson Middle School
Great teachers can ignite a spark in their student that will alter the course of their life, and such is the case with this week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week. Dana La Chapelle of Toby Johnson Middle School in the Elk Grove Unified School District gives many students their first glimpse of broadcast media. Students enter her classroom in awe of the technology they are able to use and quickly learn that they don’t just get to use the studio, but the studio is truly theirs. Students take on leadership roles in the class and become experts while sharing what they know with fellow students. In this way, Mrs. La Chapelle truly empowers her students to be content creators, not just consumers. Her students light up in a very special way when they talk about her, and are always quick to count her among their favorite teachers even after moving on from her program. She is truly a trailblazer in the world of media education and the SEVA program would not be the same without her. Thank you, Mrs. La Chapelle, for creating a program where students can find their voice and truly thrive.
Joann Darrow of Del Paso Manor Elementary School
Joann Darrow of Del Paso Manor Elementary School in the San Juan Unified School District is this week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week. Mrs. Darrow has a unique media program in that she incorporates video production right in to her normal 5th grade classroom. She has a special way of working with students that encourages them to share their authentic voices. She can find just the right push to give her students in order to get their best work, then truly celebrates their successes. Videos made by her students consistently take home top honors at the SEVA awards and students always give credit to their teacher for her support. As a past Allan Hinderstein Award Recipient, she has a commitment and passion for media education that is very special. She doesn’t rest on past successes, but continuously looks to improve her craft and learn about how incorporating media can help her students in all their educational pursuits. Thank you, Mrs. Darrow, for being a shining example of what incredible things can happen when you welcome media education in to your normal school day.
Josh Weeks of Bell Avenue Elementary School
Joshua Weeks from Bell Avenue School in the Robla School District is this week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week. Mr. Weeks is known for being the teacher who can help with anything in the technology realm, and students as well as fellow teachers look to him for guidance! Mr. Weeks takes the interest his students have in media and uses it as a jumping off point to become content creators instead of just consumers. He knows just how important giving his students the outlet to share their vision can be to their overall academic success. Students say his sense of humor helps them get through challenging projects, and their perseverance pays off when students watch their finished videos. Their creativity with media under Mr. Weeks has really flourished, and students from his program took home the SEVA Award in the Creative Expression 4-6 grade category at the 2020 SEVAs! Thank you, Mr. Weeks, for showing how you can use technology in education to allow students to share their creativity.
Nick Maltbie of James McKee Elementary School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week is Nick Maltbie of James McKee Elementary School in the Elk Grove Unified School District. Mr. Maltbie is a computer teacher who was adventurous enough to take on the challenge of starting a media broadcasting group for the school. He jumped in with two feet and started learning all there is to know about elementary school media education. Mr. Malbie quickly became a staple of the SEVA teacher group, never missing a meeting or training. In this way he hit the ground running and his students were able to start working very quickly. His students credit him with helping them take on this new challenge and teaching them all that they know. McKee students quickly found their stride with great news segments like “Book Talk” that developed a following across the school. Mr. Maltbie has the great ability to see the uniqueness in each student and let them share that through media. It’s obvious that he truly cherishes the role he gets to play in the lives of his students. He continues to find ways to let them connect through media, even while at home. Thank you, Mr. Malbie, for showing what doors you can open for students by introducing them to media education.
Kaitlin Taylor of Sylvan Middle School
Kaitlin Taylor of Sylvan Middle School in the San Juan Unified School District is this week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week! Mrs. Taylor looks at media education from the lens of history, a subject she has taught for many years. She sees media as a way to help shape future leaders, and gives them responsibilities within Sylvan’s IYFN broadcast to help them reach that goal. It’s no surprise that plain, old-fashioned news is her favorite category. Her students say she has a special talent of getting them organized and motivated to do better and take on new challenges. Although she is new to media, her enthusiasm and love of teaching shine through and create a special spark that helps students achieve greatness.
On creating broadcasts from home, Mrs. Taylor and her students have continued to inspire each other with their positivity. Despite challenging circumstances, Mrs. Taylor has decided to focus on all the “Good News” happening in their school community, creating a class website that focuses on positivity and creating a sense of connectedness for all students. The website also allows students the opportunity to practice the written style of journalism even more and take pride in being leaders in the school. Thank you, Mrs. Taylor, for spreading positivity in your school, and beyond.
Trevor Harding of Sunrise Elementary School
This week’s SEVA Teacher of the Week is the 2020 Allan Hinderstein Award Recipient Trevor Harding of Sunrise Elementary School in the Elk Grove Unified School District. Mr. Harding is one of the most energetic teachers you will ever meet. He is always moving and has a magical ability to brighten up a room whether it’s filled with adults or students. Mr. Harding understands how important it is for his students to feel empowered and have independence in the classroom. He lets the students create what they are passionate about, and encourages them to make it the best it can be. A life-long student himself, Mr. Harding takes time to learn how to be a better media teacher. He takes what he learns and works to share it not just with his students, but with fellow SEVA teachers as well. In this way, he constantly comes up with new ways for students to share their ideas and have their voices be heard. He has the incredible talent of finding a way to make any situation fun. There is no doubt that the SEVA Teacher Community would not be the same without him.