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Photo shows headshot of four teachers at Noble Schools. On top of the photos is text that reads "Noble Schools Names Four New Distinguished Teachers" and the Noble shield logo in the bottom right corner.

Noble Schools has welcomed four additional teachers into its Distinguished Teacher program. This program provides an industry-changing approach to celebrating and rewarding teachers who are achieving an exceptional impact with students. Among other benefits, each Distinguished Teacher will receive an additional $10,000 annually for as long as they remain teachers at Noble.

>> Read more about the Distinguished Teacher program here

We’re thrilled to announce the addition of four exemplary teachers who round out a diverse cohort of educators,” said Constance Jones, CEO of Noble, “With an average of over 11 completed years of teaching experience, each of the new recipients have proven that their unique methods and passionate approaches in the classroom have created meaningful, long-lasting impacts on their students that will instill in them the tools and confidence needed to match their full potential.”

Read more about the four new Distinguished Teachers:

ALLISON FIFOLT, PRITZKER COLLEGE PREP

Photo shows a headshot of Allison Fifolt, a teacher at Pritzker College Prep, outdoors

Hometown: Grand Haven, MI

Education: Bachelor’s from University of Michigan & Master of Art in Teaching from Dominican University

Years of Teaching: 12

Why is serving students important to you?

Education matters. My educational experience has played a huge role in forming who I am today. Having the opportunity to play a role in a student’s academic journey is the most humbling and rewarding experience I could think to dedicate my service to.”

What does it mean for you to be named a Distinguished Teacher (DT)?

“This award is huge in terms of improving the sense of stability and value I now feel working at Noble. Furthermore, to be awarded after such a tumultuous two years of teaching provides a special sense of reward and relief.”

How has the DT program helped you grow as a teacher?

“The Distinguished Teacher application process is hard core. It requires you to reflect deeply on your instructional mindsets, decisions, and outcomes. Going through the process has truly challenged me and helped me grow as an educator.”

JAMIE PHILLEO, HANSBERRY COLLEGE PREP

Photo shows Jamie Philleo, a teacher at Hansberry College Prep, with a blank white background behind her

Hometown: Littleton, CO

Education: Bachelor’s in English Literature from University of Northern Colorado & Master of Education from University of Colorado at Denver

Years of Teaching: 9

Why is serving students important to you?

“I believe that all students deserve an equal opportunity for success and achievement, and Noble is a school that enables me to strive toward that ideal while being in a career where I am able to create positive change. I love my students and their families and feel honored to be a teacher in the Noble community.”

What does it mean for you to be named a Distinguished Teacher?

“Receiving this award is a huge personal and professional achievement. It affirms the hard work I have devoted throughout my nine years of teaching. While I feel proud to have met this career milestone, I know that mastering teaching is a journey, and that is what I love most about this career! Being named a Distinguished Teacher is a step forward professionally while allowing me to continue my work within the classroom where I am happiest.”

How has the DT program helped you grow as a teacher?

“The Distinguished Teacher process pushed me to be more intentional and reflective in my teaching choices. The work involved to become a Distinguished Teacher reinvigorated my love for teaching and inspired me to hold myself to a higher standard.”

KELLI SEGERSON, CHICAGO BULLS COLLEGE PREP

Photo shows a headshot of Kelli Segerson, a teacher at Chicago Bulls College Prep, in front of a blank white background

Hometown: Chicago, IL

Education: Bachelor’s in Psychology from Loyola University Chicago & Master’s in Applied Clinical Psychology from Capella University

Years of Teaching: 13

Why is serving students important to you?

Our young people are our future. Empowering young people to reach their full potential and be their best selves is something our country desperately needs.”

What does it mean for you to be named a Distinguished Teacher?

I have dedicated my life to Noble, teaching, and our kids over the last 11 years. Receiving this award is something that illustrates my hard work and dedication. It is something that I take very seriously and very humbly. I am appreciative and grateful.”

How has the DT program helped you grow as a teacher?’

The Distinguished Teacher application and selection process require a careful consideration and reflection process of every portion of your teaching practice. Because it is such an honor, it required me to carefully reflect and think about so many different portions of my planning and execution in the classroom.”

PHILLIP STOSBERG, PRITZKER COLLEGE PREP

Photo shows a headshot of Phillip Stosberg, a teacher at Pritzker College Prep, inside a house and in front of photo frames on the wall

Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky

Education: Bachelor’s in Russian Language and German Language from the University of Kentucky & Master of Education from DePaul University

Years of Teaching: 15

Why is serving students important to you?

It has become more and more clear to me over the years that my teaching has impacted more than the individuals I have taught, but their families and communities. I take great satisfaction in teaching the younger siblings, cousins, and friends of past students whom I have taught. My goal is to help them open new doors and discover new interests, passions, and opportunities for themselves, not only in their college and career experiences, but also for personal enrichment.”

What does it mean for you to be named a Distinguished Teacher?

My hope is that I can contribute to cutting through the barriers of cynicism, nihilism, and despair that exist in our present world by offering a vision of hope and positivity that is grounded firmly on the pursuit of truth and justice. I want to continue to gain experience and evolve as a teacher, working together with my fellow teachers and administrators to continue to create a better school that better serves our students.”

How has the DT program helped you grow as a teacher?

“It wasn’t just this year, but a uniquely long two plus years of reflection when I started working on the very arduous application process for Distinguished Teacher. This process forced me to think deeply about all of the students I have taught, how I have gotten to know them, their families, and the community, and how I might continue to serve them better. In many ways, I was pushed to refine practices that I thought made sense when I started teaching, but having learned from other Distinguished Teachers, I have begun to see shortcomings in much of what I do. Being chosen for this distinction of ‘Distinguished Teacher’ will continue to push me and not just simply put my feet on my desk and hang my coat on a hook.”

MORE ABOUT THE DISTINGUISHED TEACHER PROGRAM

Distinguished Teachers must be in at least their fourth year teaching at Noble, having exemplified Noble’s core values and traits in five key areas:

  • Student Growth: Are your students achieving exceptional growth?
  • Classroom Culture: In what ways have you created a strong classroom in which students feel invested, empowered, and connected?
  • Instructional Rigor: In what ways does your classroom culture, planning, and instruction push students’ cognitive lift, quality responses, and intentional use of time?
  • Inclusion and Relevance: How is your classroom inclusive of and/or relevant to the students that you serve?
  • Extended Impact: How have you directly impacted your school, the community it serves, and/or our network outside of your classroom?

Distinguished Teachers apply for the program by submitting written narratives and a portfolio of artifacts including comprehensive data. Finalists then participate in classroom observations and debriefs, student surveys, a panel interview, and reference checks over the course of several months.

The Distinguished Teacher designation comes with several clearly defined benefits:

  • An additional $10,000 award on top of base salary, as determined by the Noble Salary Schedule, each year for the duration of employment as a teacher at Noble;
  • Opportunities to engage in professional development specific to Distinguished Teachers as well as facilitate professional development experiences across Noble Schools;
  • Unique opportunities to participate in network-wide decisions across functions;
  • Participation in the selection of future Distinguished Teachers.

“We first instituted the Distinguished Teacher program in 2018 following years of research on how we should identify, celebrate, reward and learn from Noble’s most impactful educators.

Now, four years later, I’m proud of the substantial body of work that we have built-up and will continue to expand. Thirty-eight teachers have received the honor to date, which means the practices of these outstanding educators collectively teaching a diverse set of subjects are being codified.

Through the program, we’re constantly improving our approach to teaching both to ensure that each new class of students is receiving the best educational experience possible, and that this experience truly speaks to them and guides them as they strive toward their highest aspirations.”

-Ellen Metz, Head of Schools, Noble Schools

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