Mr. Phelon Receives 2017 Excellence in Teaching Award
Congratulations Mr. Phelon!
CONGRATULATIONS to Mr. Leonard Phelon on being selected to receive the 2017 Pioneer Valley Excellence in Teaching Award. This is Mr. Phelon’s 44th year teaching in the Ludlow Public Schools. He began his teaching career at Baird Middle School, where he taught mathematics for seven years prior to accepting his assignment at Ludlow High School, where he has currently been teaching for 37 years.
Phelon has been the LHS Mathematics Department chair for the past ten year, where, among other duties, he is responsible for assigning classes to teachers in his department. Every year Phelon assigns himself to teach 4 levels of classes, allowing him to keep in contact with the transition of students as they navigate through the mathematics department. Currently he teaches Algebra 1 & 2, Pre-Calculus and Advanced Placement Calculus.
“Lenny is reserved, unassuming and does not seek attention,” remarked LHS Assistant Principal Mrs. Nancy Kurty about her colleague, “but his students are well aware of his teaching ability and are appreciative when they are assigned to him. Over the years many students have written notes to him and to his supervisors noting how they breezed through their college math classes because they were well prepared by Mr. Phelon.”
Kurty also proudly shared that this past year when LHS was informed of the AP testing results, it was noted that 54% of Phelon’s Advanced Placement Calculus students had qualified for college credit, with 4 of his students obtaining the highest score of 5.
"Mr. Phelon is an outstanding teacher who has touched the lives of so many students,” enthusiastically shared LHS Principal, Mrs. Lisa Nemeth. “He has been a coach, mentor, and department chair who always puts students' learning first. He has a great relationship with all students and over and over students say - I love Mr. Phelon! I am so glad he is finally being recognized with this prestigious award."
Outside of the classroom Phelon has served in many co-curricular activities; serving as the LHS girl’s basketball coach for 16 years, baseball for 7 years, softball for 5 years and was a class advisor for the classes of 1984, 1988, 1992 and 1996, for a total of 16 years. Currently he is part of a professional development project focusing on “Lesson Study” conducted by the Pioneer Valley DSAC team which supports middle and high school mathematics teachers.
In his spare time Phelon assists in the management of a family farm which includes produce farming, baling hay and in the production and sale of maple syrup. He has won several awards for his farming accomplishments at the Eastern States agriculture competitions.
Kurty summarized Phelon’s impact on the LHS community and why he is so deserving of this award, “Lenny is an outstanding teacher, mentor, valuable resource for colleagues and a superb role model to all teachers at Ludlow High School, and has been so for the past 44 years. He continues to provide our students with exceptional expertise in his field, both in, and beyond, the classroom walls.”
Mr. Phelon receives congratulations from his students, LHS Principal, Mrs. Lisa Nemeth and LPS Superintendent, Dr. Todd Gazda.