Educator of the Week - Olivia Helland

posted by Tracy Herbster -

Olivia Helland, Special Education Teacher at Clackamas High School in Clackamas, Oregon

Nominated by  Dorothy Frison  (grandparent of student):

Olivia Helland has her master’s degree in education and specializes as a Learning Specialist.   I am the grandmother of one of the young men in one of her classes, and his dad wants you to know that because of Olivia, his son looks forward to school now and his chances of being a drop out are 0% because of the hard work she has put in on his behalf. She has worked endlessly to make sure he keeps on task and she keeps in touch with ALL of his teachers to make sure he is doing well in each of his classes. Any time his parents or I have a concern for grades, homework, or skills, she doesn't hesitate to offer a solution, and each and every time it has been a benefit and improvement, giving him more confidence. Plus, he is obtaining better grades than ever before.  Mrs. Helland coordinates with general education teachers and counselors to get the best education for EACH of her students to make sure they succeed no matter what their learning disability is.  The time and energy it would take is daunting, but she is there for each of them. It’s amazing the results she has achieved in turning a failing student around to one that will pass and graduate on time and looks forward to going to school. She is very well liked by students, teachers, and coworkers.  She is an awesome asset to Clackamas High School, and deserves to be acknowledged for her work and dedication to students and education.

Congrats, Olivia, from all of us at K103! Get to know Olivia Helland:

What inspired you to become an educator?

I was inspired to become an educator when I was working as an instructional assistant after I earned my bachelor's degree. I really enjoyed supporting students in their classes and with their classwork. I also enjoyed working with the school staff.

What do you like most about teaching?

I like working with students and their families the most.

What has changed the most since you began your career in education?

I think my role as an educator evolves and is changing all of the time. Not only do I support students with their academics, but I also support them if they are having a fight with a friend, or if they need advice about something else in their life, or if something really exciting is happening to them and they want to tell me about it.

What would you like parents to know about your job?

I really enjoy working with their child and I see their potential, their strengths, and what makes them an individual.

Share a favorite story about your years in education.

Last year I had a student who wrote an essay that they were avoiding, and once they finally wrote it, with support, they aced it! It was so awesome!

Each week during the school year, K103 and Concordia University will honor a local educator.  Each week, our honored educator receives:

  • $103 Gift Card for Classroom School Supplies
  • The Crystal Apple Award
  • A Concordia University Continuing Education Scholarship

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