Ike parapro honored for making a difference
Ike parapro honored for making a difference
Posted on 04/27/2018
Head shot of Mrs. Thomas smilingUtica Community Schools is proud to recognize Mrs. Val Thomas, Eisenhower Paraprofessional, as the Utica Community Schools recipient of this year’s Make a Difference Award.

Mrs. Thomas serves as a paraprofessional for Anna Forest, a senior student at Eisenhower High School. Each year, the Parent Advisory Committee (PAC) of the Macomb Intermediate School District, offers parents the opportunity to nominate a member of the school staff who has made a significant impact on their student’s educational experience.

We are pleased to announce, that for nine consecutive years a Utica Community Schools special education staff member has been the recipient of this county award. Mrs. Thomas was nominated for this award by Anna’s mother, Mrs. Monica Forest.

In her nomination letter, Mrs. Forest states that Mrs. Thomas has an understanding of her daughter’s needs in many ways and has made a positive impact on her educational experience.

Mrs. Forest continued stating, “Ms. Val gave Anna high expectations, self-discipline, and an appreciation to be organized. These are skills that need to be practiced every day.”

Mrs. Thomas has served the district in a variety of building support and classroom aide positions since November of 1995. She began her individual work with Anna during the 2015-2016 school year at Shelby Jr. High.

Mrs. Thomas chose to take a braille class so that when Anna needed an assignment in braille, she could quickly have it available so Anna would not fall behind in her assignments.

This class was time consuming, requiring homework and projects to be completed. Mrs. Thomas was not required to take this class but wanted to help Anna in every way possible.

This act of love is one of the many reasons that Mrs. Thomas is deserving of this award. Mrs. Forest states, “Through Anna’s progress, we can see the importance of Mrs. Thomas’s effort and the ‘you can do it’ message Mrs. Thomas always gave, that set Anna up for success.”

Utica Community Schools is pleased for the opportunity to publicly recognize Mrs. Val Thomas for her dedication to our students with special challenges.

In the spirit of this award, she truly is a paraprofessional that has gone above and beyond to make a difference in the lives of Anna and her family. April 23,