Stephen Coots and Angela South are Deer Valley’s newest Demonstration Classroom of Excellence teachers. This recognition comes as a result of the utilization of data effectively and efficiently to make significant impacts on the academic success of students.

Step foot into Mr. Coot’s Boulder Creek High School’s Probability and Statistics and Algebra 3-4 classroom, and you will encounter excellence. Students sit in cooperative learning groups, and pour through their data, set SMART goals for themselves, and personally conference one on one with Mr. Coots, to ensure personal success in his class.

Goals result in extrinsic and intrinsic rewards in that students benefit from the drive that comes from incremental success, while earning tangible rewards that are associated with goal attainment as well. All of these very serious measures of success, are juxtaposed to Mr. Coot’s fun loving side.

Whether it is Mr. Coot’s over the top dedication to Spirit week, which why wouldn’t he participate in Spirit week, he’s been a loyal BC Jag for 10 years? Or experiments like calculating how many licks it takes to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie pop (it’s exponential by the way) or his coy math jokes, Mr. Coots and his students know how to build a safe community where learning is fun…and that’s Excellent!

They may be five, six tops, but make no mistake, Mrs. South’s kindergarteners can set goals and achieve like their much older school mates. Age is not a factor for these students. Just ask one to pull his or her data binder, and you will be taken on a journey of successes, strengths, and areas for improvement, with very few
side-tracked stories of brothers and sisters, and big adventures at recess.

Although they are among the youngest in our Deer Valley family, Mrs. South has seen to it that the smallest roots are among the strongest. These data driven students move from station to station seamlessly, work diligently, and take pride and ownership of their work and their accomplishments. What’s more, when they are in Mrs. South’s room, they are an extended family, and it shows. Now isn’t that… Excellent!