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C.A.K.E. Awards December 2023

C.A.K.E. Awards December 2023 Photo Collage of Jayda Jackson and Julian Pena

Congratulations to Jayda Jackson, a 1st grade learner attending Chubbuck Elementary, and Julian Pena, a 12th grade learner attending Highland High School, who were chosen as the Pocatello/Chubbuck School District 25 December C.A.K.E. award recipients. C.A.K.E. stands for Character, Attitude, Kindness and Encouragement.

Jayda was nominated by her teacher, Ms. Katie Burrup. In her nomination letter, Ms. Burrup wrote, “Jayda is the most kind and genuine little person. She is extremely thoughtful and tries her best to make sure everyone feels included and valued in our classroom. She will partner up with everyone and will go out of her way to include classmates that don't have a buddy. Jayda will stand up for her peers; I have watched it happen out on the playground. She treats everyone with respect and kindness, even in situations where her kindness goes unnoticed. Jayda does the right thing just because she knows it is right, not because she is looking to be praised. We had a friend in our class that was having a very hard day. I knew that it was a rough day for them, but the rest of the class was oblivious, except for Jayda. Jayda checked on this person over and over; I also heard Jayda ask if she wanted to play with her at recess. After they came in from playing, I chatted with the kid that was having a rough day. She told me, "Jayda made me feel better. I hope she is always my friend." This is just one example of her kindness. She does things like this all the time! She will often bring me little notes before school that say things like, "I love you," "I hope you have a good day." I know that she genuinely means those things. We just recently did candy grams at our school. Jayda paid attention to which kids didn't receive any or less than others. She took the time to write each of them a candy gram. Jayda is a fantastic student as well. She cares for her learning and wants to get better every day. She often will help out classmates that need help with a smile on her face. She will encourage them and help them feel their own success. It seems to make her happy when those around her are happy. She enjoys school and always has a positive attitude. She is a joy to teach. I am so glad I have had the chance to be her teacher.”

Julian was nominated by his teacher, Ms. Ann Roberts. In her nomination letter, Ms. Roberts wrote, “Julian is that rare gem of a student who makes a lasting impact on everyone fortunate enough to interact with him. He is one of those people who quietly enters a room and somehow makes it brighter. What immediately set Julian apart is his innate kindness, strong work ethic, and a sense of responsibility that goes above and beyond what is expected. He doesn't call attention to himself, and probably doesn't realize the impact he makes on the world around him; however, he manifests kindness and respect and a willingness to learn that is exemplary. Julian is an outstanding student in every sense of the word. Every teacher wants to feel they are reaching their students and helping them learn; Julian gave this to me. His attentiveness during every lesson–the nods of understanding, eye contact, and responsiveness–made all the difference for me. He willingly goes above and beyond in his work. Creative writing might not come naturally or easily to him, but he puts in work. He revised his short story over and over again, carefully adding the components of each lesson, doing whatever was necessary to create quality work–even if he had already received full points on the assignment. He was willing to collaborate with any student, and put forth his best efforts to help others when asked, but the beautiful thing about his character is that I never needed to ask. After I dismissed class, I would frequently turn around and see him there straightening up my room without prompting and without staying for thanks or reward. My day was made better by his kind manners and genuine enthusiasm for my lessons, even the boring ones. Julian serves as a poignant reminder of “my why” as a teacher.”

Jayda and Julian were recognized at the Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday, December 12, 2023. McDonald's provides each learner and their nominators with a gift card, along with $50 to purchase books for the school’s media center in the recipients’ names.

PCSD 25 believes a safe, supportive, caring and respectful environment is critical to student learning. The District Education Foundation, in partnership with the local Johnson Family McDonald’s, supports the Learner-of-the-Month C.A.K.E. Award to recognize students who show great character.  The district recognizes one elementary learner and one secondary learner from October through May. Nominations for the C.A.K.E. Award are submitted by a teacher who has observed the nominee’s behavior, and are approved by the school’s principal.

If you would like to nominate a learner for the C.A.K.E. award, you can do so here:

Nominations that are not chosen will carry over each month until the end of the school year. Please be as detailed as possible on your nomination.  

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