Congratulations to the 2017-2018 High School Principals Association (HSPA) Teachers of the Year from Stone Ridge:
Veteran Teacher of the Year – Ms. Holly Zindulis
New Teacher of the Year – Dr. Jeanne Downey-Vanover
Upper School English teacher Holly Zindulis says teaching is not a job, but a calling. She fell in love with books at an early age, and loves sharing books she cherishes with students whose promise and passion continually inspire her. In class discussions of literature, Holly challenges her students to form a deeper understanding of our world, to think critically about our beliefs and assumptions, and to express complex ideas with clarity and grace. Ms. Zindulis particularly enjoys helping her students become better and more confident writers.
A Sacred Heart alumna, Ms. Zindulis is grateful to have attended Stuart Country Day and was delighted to return to the Network as a Sacred Heart educator, first as an English teacher at Woodlands Academy, and since 2011 at Stone Ridge. In addition to teaching Grade 9 and 11 English classes, she has also served as senior class dean and chaperones the Stone Ridge service trips with the Appalachia Service Project. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from Princeton University and Master of Arts from Northwestern University. In her free time, she Ms. enjoys reading, writing, running along the Potomac, and hiking the backcountry. Among her many favorite writers she particularly loves the poems of Rilke, Frost, Stevens, Heaney, and Oliver, and the novels of Proust, Woolf, Faulkner, and Kingsolver.
Dr. Jeanne Downey-Vanover is the Assistant Head of SR's Upper School, Chair of World Languages, and a Upper School Spanish teacher. She has three decades of experience as an educational innovator and leader and her passion for the art of teaching is evident in her classroom, in her interactions with fellow educators, and in her involvement in professional education organizations. She is a lifelong learner, a promoter of international mindedness, a servant leader, and a welcome addition to the Upper School leadership team. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish Language at West Chester University, a Master's Degree in Spanish Language and Literature, and a Ph.D. in Linguistics at University of Maryland. Languages are Dr. Downey-Vanover's passion, especially music: the universal language. On the weekends, she serves as Director of Music Ministry for Youth at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church and spends her free time with her family, traveling, listening to music, learning something new, walking, and going to Zumba.
Ms. Zindulis and Dr. Downey-Vanover were honored at the HSPA Professional Development Day on October 26, 2018. This award is particularly gratifying, as they were chosen by their peers.
Dr. Downey-Vanover, Mr. McClusky and Ms. Zindulis