Dr. Jackie Stevens has taken professional development and made it desirable. The impact has changed the whole district.

Not only does Dr. Jackie Stevens bring enthusiasm and energy to her classroom, she brings a love of forever-learning to her district in ways that are both unique and impactful. With a focus on staff development, students at Mora High School see that learning doesn’t end at graduation, it’s a life-long process and their educators are still investing in learning to be better every day. 

“Dr. Stevens is one of the most amazing educators I’ve ever met,” said Brent Nelson, Mora High School’s Principal. “Jackie has taken staff development and made it something our staff looks forward to, rather than rolls their eyes at.”

A Fresh Approach

In addition to her role as an English teacher, Dr. Stevens leads the professional development efforts at Mora High School, always bringing her enthusiasm and energy for education to the district in different ways.

“I feel really proud when I think about the work I’ve done with staff development,” Dr. Stevens said. “I wanted it to be something where you can’t get away from it because it’s in the bathroom,” Stevens says, referring to her “Potty PD” signs that are up in each staff restroom. The Potty PD (Personal Development) posters highlight professional development tips, issue classroom challenges, and provide inspiring ideas on how to go further as an educator.

The staff at Mora High School has welcomed the professional development, and Nelson cites that they have less absenteeism on Staff Development days than previously since Stevens took over. “She’s always going the extra mile for our staff, and it’s definitely noticed,” Nelson said.

Dedication to Learning

Dr. Stevens lives and breathes education – quite literally, as she lives in a former schoolhouse in Mora. She’s fueled by her students and colleagues and is driven to help them be their best and do their best for each other and the community.

“We are in the business of learning, and if we are not all continuous learners ourselves, then we’re not going to be doing a great job for our own learners in our classrooms,” Dr. Stevens says. “We’re creating a culture where professional development is expected and enjoyed and we all want to keep learning more,” Stevens says. “When staff says ‘this was really valuable, this made me think about things in a different way, or can we do this again please’ that is so exciting to me.”

Educator of Excellence

MREA honored Stevens as a 2021 Educator of Excellence for her innovation, collaboration and unwavering commitment to get results for her students. See more stories of Educators for Excellence.