Mercer Island School District announces teachers of the year

The Mercer Island School District has announced its three 2013 ‘Teachers of the Year.’

Heidi Harmening, Jeff Randolph and Tonya Van Orden were each recognized for their stellar work in the classroom this past school year.

Harmening is a kindergarten teacher at Lakeridge, where she has worked since 2006.

“It’s a rare day to find her without a smile on her face or a joke or funny story to share,” wrote a fellow teacher in her nomination.

Randolph is an English teacher at Mercer Island High School.

“Mr. Randolph genuinely relates to us and is a consistently understanding and entertaining source of knowledge and support,” wrote one of his students.

Van Orden, a science teacher at Islander Middle School since 1999, has helped students love the subject that she teaches.

“Students love her and push themselves beyond their comfort levels in pursuit of knowledge,” wrote a fellow teacher. “I wish that everyone could spend a few minutes in her classroom, as watching her teach is truly motivational.”

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