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Copley-Fairlawn City School District Educator Wins State-Wide Elementary Physical Education Teacher of the Year Award




CFCS Physical Education Teacher of the Year


Kathy Casper, physical education teacher at Copley-Fairlawn City School District's Fort Island Primary School, was recently awarded the Elementary Physical Education Teacher of the Year Award by the Ohio Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (OAPHERD).


Casper, who has taught in Copley-Fairlawn City Schools for the past 20 years, was nominated for the award in the 2017-18 school year. She completed a thorough application that included essay question responses, award criteria responses and letters of recommendation.


“I am incredibly proud, humbled and honored to receive this award,” said Casper. “I love what I do and am passionate about my profession. I believe that a quality physical education program endeavors to provide the basis by which children will become physically, socially and emotionally healthy and adjusted through a physically active lifestyle.”


The purpose of the award is to recognize the achievements of an elementary physical educator who has demonstrated responsibility for teaching physical education in grades K through 6. The educator must also be a member of OAHPERD, the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) or the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AAPERD).


Furthermore, the physical educator must utilize various teaching methodologies, assume responsibility for his/her professional growth and serve as a positive role model, epitomizing personal health and fitness, enjoyment of activity and sensitivity to the needs of students.


“What I love most about working in Copley-Fairlawn is the people,” said Casper. “The Copley families, staff, administrators, fellow teachers and, most of all, the children are wonderful to work with. We are very fortunate to have a supportive and engaged school community.”


The OAHPERD Awards Reception will take place on Thursday, Nov. 29 at the Kalahari Indoor Water Park and Convention Center in Sandusky, OH. By receiving the award, Casper is expected to present at the 2019 OAPHERD Annual Convention, which will also be held at Kalahari.


“In my opinion, there is no one is the state that is more deserving of this award than ‘Coach’ Casper,” said Fort Island Principal Bob Whitaker. “She is not only passionate about her curriculum; she is also a leader when it comes to integrating physical education into every other discipline. I have seen her students solving math equations on a rock wall and learning about heart health by running through an obstacle course based on cardiac geography. This is the short list of what goes on daily at Fort Island Primary School under Kathy’s guidance.”


In addition to her teaching, Casper has been involved in the Fort Island Building Leadership Team for eight years, representing the “specials” teachers (art, physical education and music). She is also a member of the social committee and is co-coordinator of the physical education curriculum.


“Congratulations to Kathy for winning the Elementary Physical Educator of the Year Award, which she truly deserves,” said Superintendent Brian Poe. “She continually encourages healthy living and education with equal enthusiasm and skill throughout our district, developing the Copley P.R.I.D.E. code that our staff and students live by.”


For more information regarding the Copley-Fairlawn City School District, please visit