Monday evening, Region XI Education Service Center announced its regional teaching awards for the 2019-2020 school year. Carroll ISD Elementary Teacher of the Year, Komal Panjabi was recognized for her essay on mental health awareness in education.
After earning campus teacher of the year honors, these educators are asked to answer questions and submit essays for this District Teacher of the Year nomination. Those essays are the same that are required for the Regional Teacher of the Year application. Panjabi wrote her educational issue essay on the subject of mental wellness in our students and shared ways that she tries to assist her student as they work through the challenging times of growing up.
“Mental health is an issue that I think we have struggled with in our public education system, underestimating the role it plays in success at school,” Panjabi wrote. “However, I do believe we are working towards greater awareness and more training for all adults who interact with students.”
Panjabi went on to describe how she takes experiences in her life into every interaction in her classroom. She begins her class every week with “Family Circle’, an activity that allows students to share the good, bad, and sometimes tough parts of their weekend.
“I understand the power of my words, and I teach my students the same,” Panjabi wrote in her essay. “Family Circle makes my students invested in the classroom community and teaches morals and relationship building”
Panjabi currently teaches Math at Durham Intermediate School and has been a member of the District Diversity Council and works with the Friends of Rachel and Rachel’s Challenge teams at DIS.