Teachers awarded student jerseys for making a difference

Before class­es began at Quakertown Community High School, sev­er­al senior student-athletes had their uni­forms ready as a one-day gift to their favorite teacher to wear or hang in their classroom.

What may become a new tra­di­tion was inspired by Kate Kemp, a social stud­ies teacher, who read about “My Jersey, Your Impact,” at anoth­er school. “It’s a good way to show teach­ers they are val­ued and appre­ci­at­ed,” she said. “In the end, the kids do appre­ci­ate what we do every day.”

When Mackenna Calabria heard about the plan, she imme­di­ate­ly knew her track jer­sey would go to Jason Anderson, her coach for each year of her high school career. “He’s absolute­ly an amaz­ing coach, teacher, and role mod­el in my life,” Mackenna said. “He’s very under­stand­ing and gets me to do the best I can. He’s had the biggest impact in my life, and helped make me the ath­lete I am today.”

When he saw Mackenna, the Suburban One League’s Liberty Division 100-Meter Dash cham­pi­on, approach his class­room, Mr. Anderson walked to the door and was all smiles as she explained the event. Afterward, as he processed the kind words from his star ath­lete, Mr. Anderson said “I’m flat­tered and very appre­cia­tive. It’s a nice thank you.”

In all, 15 fall ath­letes award­ed teach­ers at QCHS and Strayer Middle School their jer­seys. For the edu­ca­tors, being cho­sen car­ries an extra boost of know­ing the work they do day in and day out is mak­ing a real dif­fer­ence in the lives of their students.

Jennifer Honrado became emo­tion­al as John Eatherton explained why he was hand­ing her his foot­ball jer­sey. “She’s always pos­i­tive,” John said. “She always says hel­lo. Everybody loves her.”

Mrs. Honrado was over­whelmed. “Oh, my God, that was awe­some. It’s so spe­cial. That made my week.”

Other stu­dents award­ing their jer­seys were Sydney Bishop (Bethany Fuller and Laura Neilson), Natalie Boyd (Brittany Bamford), Kayra DeVries (Audrey Waddell), Sydney Fronheiser (Amanda Cordisco), Brett Hileman and Stone Renshaw (Jill Macaulay), Madison Kalinowski (Nick Hood), Kelly Kreuz (Nicole Jerrom), Karlee Metz (Rebecca Hamel), Julie Pizzi (Katie Hoffman), Kayla Sicher (Chris Polk), Brianna Stefenack (Zach Garger), Emily Wehr (Gayle Quinton).

This is tru­ly a great idea to hon­or the teach­ers who have impact­ed these seniors,” said Athletic Director Sylvia Kalazs said. “Looking for­ward to the Winter and Spring editions.”