Players take time to say thank you to educators

The concept of being a student-athlete is an important one at School of the Osage as the student part of that phrase comes first.

The boys’ basketball team at Osage always keeps that in mind and the Indians took some time to honor teachers who have made a difference in their lives with their fourth annual “Educator Night” during a basketball game against Warsaw on February 9 at Heritage Gymnasium.

Osage coach Kevin Schnicker said athletes often thank their coaches and teammates for their successes, but it is also important to thank those who are there to support them in the stands and in the classroom.

“We have a tradition at Osage where the boys thank people after the game for coming to support them. The boys go up in the stands and let the fans know they appreciate them coming to watch them play,” he said. “But as most people know, in high school and college an athlete needs to have success in the classroom in order to be allowed to play. With that in mind, the team took some time to acknowledge teachers within the district who have made an impact on their lives.”

Each teacher was escorted by a player to mid-court and an excerpt of the letters each player had written was read aloud as a framed copy of the letter was given to each teacher. This is what the players had to say:

Jonathan Rembold, History Teacher, Osage High - Dalton Depee

"You've taught me to give it my all in everything that I do. You bring out the best in everyone around you. You have shown me what it is like to be a great person, and to care about everyone not just yourself."

Sharon Webb, English Teacher, Osage High - Aaron Evans

"I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for being a great teacher, mentor and for having such a positive influence on my life. You are one of the greatest influences I've had and I wanted to thank you for it."

Ryan Gier, Spanish Teacher, Osage High - Parker Jett

"You clearly have a passion for teaching and it shows. Any of your students that you've had can all say how much you truly care about them. You have inspired me to sincerely care for people and if you are passionate and put effort into something, you can master it."

David Sperling, Assistant Principal, Heritage Elementary - Trey Rassenfoss

"The life skills you taught in fifth grade will stay with me and be useful the rest of my life. Thank you for being such a great role model and molding me into the person I am today."

Kristen O'Haro, Math Teacher, Osage High - Garrett Sutherland

"I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for being a great teacher and having such a positive influence on my life. You are kind, caring and an inspiration to everyone you meet. Thank you for making me feel special and showing an interest in my life academically."

Cassidy Stombaugh, FACS Teacher, Osage Middle - Traygen Whittle

"You were kind to everyone even when they didn't deserve it and it was awesome to see that. I could tell that you wanted to be there and liked teaching and that was great to me. Thank you for inspiring me and making learning fun for everyone.”

Heather Edwards, Reading Teacher, Upper Elementary - Drake Gaines

"You're an inspiration to many people and that inspires me to be like you one day! Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value- you show the real meaning in the value in something."

Amy McDonald, Physical Education Teacher, Middle School - Jacob Hermann

"One thing I respect most about you is you always let your athletes and students know that you're there for them. Your way of connecting with your students is available. If there's one thing I've learned from you its that there's always time for one more game of HORSE!"

Brian Claxton, English Teacher, Osage High - Keyton Knamiller

"Any good teacher knows how important it is to connect with students and understand our culture. If there is one teacher in the whole District of School of the Osage that demonstrates this in the most perfect way it is you. Thank you for the life long knowledge you have taught me."

Amanda Pax, Counselor, Osage High - Jordon Wade

"You always have such an uplifting energy that always brightens everyone's day. I can tell you actually love your job and care about what you do and the students you talk to. It's school staff members like you who I'll remember for a life time when I look back on my high school memories and tell my children. Thank you!"

Amy Yoder, Music Teacher, Osage High - Zach Wheeler

"You are an amazing teacher and role model. You taught me many life lessons while teaching about music. I will miss the lectures, hugs, laughter, smiles, and joy that you had on your face every day. The way you care about your craft is also very admirable, I hope that when I find what I want to do I can care about it as much as you care about what you do."

Miriam Hill, Science Teacher, Osage High - Isaac Yoder

"You have inspired me to strive to great things, not just academically but morally as well. You have taught me science but you have also taught me had work, strength, and you have shown me an example of a great Christ-like woman, and for that I thank you!"

Linda Cameron, Resource Teacher, Osage Middle - Spencer Zeller

"You recognized potential in me and encouraged me to be a good person. It was easy to pick you as my educator since no other teacher has made such a great impact on my life like you have."

Mike Williams, Principal, Osage High - Boys' Basketball Team

"You never shy away from helping students and for that I say thank you." - Trey Rassenfoss

"I would like to say thank you for being a great leader in our school." - Dalton Depee

The display of appreciation was not just reserved for students though. Schnicker also took time to say thanks.

“You genuinely care for all of your staff members and students and I witness this daily,” the coach stated. “I cannot express how much your support for me and this program has meant to me and my players.”