KENS 5 and SACU kicked off our 18th year of honoring local teachers with the ExCEL Award with a ceremony this week at Boerne Middle School North.
Val Reissig was surprised to receive the award and a $1,000 check.
She is the Special Education Department Chair and General Education lead teacher in the Student Assistance Center.
Whatever the subject, whatever the grade level, Val Reissig is here to help students at Boerne Middle School North.
"She helped me in math and science. My grades have gotten better," sixth-grader Jesus Pargo said. "I want to be an encourager and I want them to be able to trust me so that then we can get to the business at hand, which is academics," Reissig said.
"She helped me in reading last year. It was really hard for me because I really wasn't really organized and I lost all my stuff," seventh-grader Isabella Lyons said.
Reissig didn't discover her gift for teaching until after she'd raised her children and a friend asked her to substitute teach.
"I worked with kids in the special ed depart, and they had my heart to this day. I love those kids," Reissig said.
She took classes to become a special education teacher, and 18 years ago, she went to work. Her role at the school has now expanded.
"This room... it started out as a room for kids in special ed. Then we found out so many kids with dsylexia needed some extra assistance. Then kids in the pre-AP classes come in here when they've been absent or need some extra time to take a test or do an assignment," she said.
Now she's also the general education lead teacher in the Student Assistance Center, where all students come for extra help.
"She's a kind-hearted person. She loves everybody and helps everybody," seventh-grader Giselle Guererro said.
"This SAC Room is available to every student, every grade, all day long," Reissig said. "My goal is to meet their individual needs."
(© 2016 KENS)