Farmington Schools names Teachers of the Year

Three Farmington Public Schools (FPS) teachers received some surprising news Wednesday, as they returned from a winter break.

Supt. Dr. Bob Herrera and staff from the Human Resources Department traveled to three schools with news for Teachers of the Year: Jackie Pinter at Forest Elementary School, Ryan Baker at Power Middle School, and Nicole Lane at North Farmington High School.

Jackie Pinter Farmington Public Schools Teacher of the Year
Jackie Pinter was selected as Elementary Teacher of the Year and received the new car lease from the Suburban Collection. (Farmington Public Schools)

Jackie Pinter

In addition to the honor, Pinter was selected to receive a two- or three-year lease of a vehicle, courtesy The Suburban Collection.

Nominated by her principal, colleagues, parents, and students, Pinter began her FPS career in 1996, at Forest and Kenbrook Elementary Schools. The following year, she began working at Forest Elementary School full-time and has been serving students there ever since.

She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Visual Impairment and her Masters of Art in Special Education Learning Disabilities from Eastern Michigan University,.

As a resource room teacher, Pinter designs instruction for up to 20 students across six grade levels and is a master reading teacher. She has served as the co-chair for the elementary resource room department, is a member of the Forest Crisis Team, and is a leader in special education.

In Pinter’s nomination form, colleague Rosemarie Levely wrote, “Jackie is the perfect example of the art of teaching. She is without a doubt a master artist. When I am evaluating students for learning disabilities, I always rely on Jackie’s observations of their skills in determining the best path for that student.”

Parent Lisa Chottiner wrote, “Mrs. Pinter was able to finely balance supporting my child while also scaffolding independence. She gave our child and family not only the tools for academic success but skills for a socially-emotionally happy life.”

Two of Pinter’s students wrote, “School didn’t come easy for us, but Mrs. Pinter taught us to never give up and encouraged us to believe in ourselves.”

Ryan Baker Farmington Public Schools Teacher of the Year
Ryan Baker (center) is pictured with Power Middle School Principal Allyson Robinson (left) and Superintendent of Schools Bob Herrera (right).

Ryan Baker

Baker has also been with the district since 1996, teaching at Power and Warner Middle Schools, as a physical education, computer keyboarding, and health teacher. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Physical Education from Cornerstone College, and a Masters Degree, in Education from the University of Michigan.

In addition to his long-time service as a coach, Baker recently implemented Project Healthy Schools, which is helping students learn to make better health and nutrition choices. He also attended Restorative Practices training to assist the Restorative Practices Facilitator with problem-solving and mediation.

Colleague Lynn Keller wrote, “He is a driven, organized teacher who develops inspiring relationships with his students. They love him because he is kind, fair, fun, and truly cares about them.”

Parent Charles Bridges said, “Mr. Baker keeps the students active, teaches correct alignment and form during movement, shines a light for his students on athletes who possess positive attributes, and perhaps, most importantly, elevates his students so they feel better about themselves by the end of the class.”

Nicole Lane Farmington Public Schools Teacher of the Year
Nicole Lane (third from left) poses with her high school students after she was surprised with the Teacher of the Year announcement. (Farmington Public Schools)

Nicole Lane

Lane has been with the district since 2002, as a physical education and math teacher at North Farmington High School (NFHS). She earned her Bachelor of Science in Health Education from Western Michigan University and a Masters in the Art of Teaching from Marygrove College.

Universally respected, trusted, and an admired leader, Lane has revolutionized NFHS’s math courses, instruction, assessment, and student success rate. She models visible thinking, reasoning, innovation, risk-taking, and lifelong learning for her students and her peers as she strives to be effective for every student in her charge.

“Our math classes, math department, and our school culture would not be what it is without Nicole Lane,” said Principal Joe Greene.

One of her colleagues wrote, “Nicole brings knowledge, humor, empathy, and high expectations to every student she meets.”

Parent Nathan White said, “She is truly unique in her mission and most deserving of the honor of Teacher of the Year. However, that title could never fully demonstrate the true value she brings to each of her students.”

All Teachers of the Year will be recognized at the May 19 Board of Education meeting, held in the Board Room at the Lewis Schulman Administrative Center, 32500 Shiawassee, Farmington.

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