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Grade 3 Carstairs teacher nominated for Edwin Parr award

The Edwin Parr award is presented annually by the Alberta School Boards Association, with one winning teacher from each of the six zones in the province.
MVT Carstairs Elementary School 1
File photo/MVP Staff

CARSTAIRS - Carstairs Elementary School Grade 3 teacher Emily Wilson says she always strives to ensure her students are “successful, smart, and brave.”

Wilson is the 2023-24 Chinook’s Edge School Division (CESD) zone nominee for the prestigious provincial Edwin Parr teaching award for first-year teachers.

Wilson, who grew up west of Didsbury, has a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Mount Royal University in Calgary, she told the Albertan.

The Edwin Parr award is presented annually by the Alberta School Boards Association. 

Wilson started her school career as an educational assistant for two years at Carstairs Elementary School before taking her degree.

“There are so many reasons why I became a teacher,” she said in a release from CESD, “but honestly, it comes down to the kids. I love interacting with them. I love seeing them grow and flourish and being the intelligent and unique kiddos that they are. It’s just a pleasure.

“My job is to make sure all their unique needs are met. I want them to feel that they are part of our class community. I want them to feel successful, smart, and brave and not be afraid to make mistakes.”

Wilson credits her parents, who are both teachers, for inspiring her to pursue a career in education.

Traci Upshaw, the principal of Carstairs Elementary School, said Wilson is well-deserving of the Edwin Parr nomination.

“Students have a lot of fun in her classroom and that’s engaging,” Upshaw said. “She is exceptionally skilled at planning those learning experiences for students. Those experiences for kids are ones that stick with them for a long time.”

Mike Garrow, the division principal for CESD, echoed Upshaw’s comments.

“The biggest thing I took away from observing and working with Emily is that students are so engaged in her lessons they don’t want to leave the classroom or stop learning,” said Garrow.

Edwin Parr served as president of the Alberta School Trustees’ Association from 1956 to 1962, with the association establishing the Edwin Parr Teacher Award in 1964.

The 11,000-student CESD is headquartered in Innisfail and includes schools across the district.

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