Park View Teacher Recognized as Intern of the Year by TACA

Park View Teacher Recognized as Intern of the Year by Texas Alternative Certification Association
Posted on 09/01/2016
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Rachel Matthews
Park View Intermediate teacher Rachel Matthews with some of her students.


Park View Intermediate math teacher, Rachel Matthews, has been named the Texas Alternative Certification Association’s (TACA) Intern of the Year for 2016.

“I was so surprised when I was originally approached about applying for this award,” Matthews said. “To me this doesn’t feel like a job. I am just doing what I enjoy and doing my best to have my students walk away each day with something new.”

Matthews was chosen from a pool of 42 other teachers licensed through alternative certification programs across the state of Texas. As part of her first place prize, she will receive a $1,000 grant from the TACA organization.

“It was a landslide decision to choose Rachel as first place for the TACA Intern of the Year,” said Eric Brown, TACA vice-president. “We are proud to have her represent us as our teacher of the year for 2016.”

To be eligible for the award, she underwent a rigorous application process that included a ten minute video of classroom instruction, a lesson plan, a student outcomes piece, three letters of recommendation and a two page paper which were judged by sixteen alternative certification directors across the state.

“Matthews is truly an outstanding educator with insurmountable attention to detail and wonderful relationships with her students,” said Dr. Rob Hasson, principal of Park View. “One of the things I love about her is that she is very structured and natural in the classroom. Her transition from the professional world to the education world has been seamless.”

Jessica Frinsco, Pasadena ISD Alternative Teacher Certification Program Instructional Specialist recommended Matthews for the program.

“Rachel is one of those teachers, even in her first few classes in ATCP, who is passionate about education,” Frinso said. “Even then, I could tell she was going to be great at building relationships with her students. When I stepped into her classroom for observation, I never felt like I was in a first-year teacher’s classroom. She’s just a natural.”

Matthews attributes her natural classroom ability to her own family experience.

“I think having my own children has helped me relate well with my students,” Matthews said. “I treat them how I would want my kids to be treated. I am also inspired by my mother, who was an educator and administrator at Houston ISD for almost 40 years.”

Matthews will be honored at the Consortium of State Organizations for Texas Teacher Education conference luncheon in San Marcos, October 17. 

Rachel MatthewsFrom left to right: Jessica Frinsco, Pasadena ISD ATCP Instructional Specialist; Matthews; Amber Kronenberger, Park View Peer Facilitator; Dr. Rob Hasson, Jr., Park View Principal and Eric Brown, TACA Vice President.