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Houston High teacher, student honored for excellence

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On Monday night, the Germantown Education Commission Board of Mayor and Aldermen Meeting honored Doreen Penrod as Teacher of the Month and Patrick Gardner as a Youth Excellence Award winner.

Penrod, a German teacher and Foreign Language Department Chair at Houston High School, was selected for her reputation as a positive role model for students and other teachers. While teaching six levels of German, she is able to bring out the best in her students, lead them to excellence and shape them to be lifelong learners. New foreign language teachers at Houston High find an advocate and mentor in Ms. Penrod. She is available at school each day long after classes are over.

Penrod is also the sole sponsor of three active clubs at Houston High – the German Club, International Club and German Folk Dancing Club. Under her guidance, these clubs contribute to outreach and charity programs such as Angel Tree, Houston vs. Hunger and Heifer International. Additionally, she joyfully takes on the task of organizing and leading student trips to Europe.

The Youth Excellence Award was presented to Gardner, a senior at Houston High School. Gardner has earned a spot as one of Houston High’s most accomplished students. He is currently ranked first in his large class, is a National Merit Commended Scholar, an AP Scholar with Distinction, an AP National Scholar and has attained a perfect ACT score. He will have 13 AP classes under his belt by graduation and plans to major in computer science or engineering in college.

Gardner as been a member of the Leadership Council for the Houston High Honors Academy for the past three years, helping to organize the St. Jude blanket project and a number of other community service projects benefitting the school and the community. As a senior, he is serving as president of both Mu Alpha Theta National Honors Society and the Houston High ACT 30 and Above Club, volunteering with both clubs as a peer tutor on many afternoons.

Gardner was selected to shadow the CFO of a national pharmacy benefit company this year and plans to use the experience as a basis for his Senior Honors Academy Project. Outside of school, Gardner is very involved in his church. He is a three-year member of the varsity tennis team and the kicker for the varsity football team.

The Germantown Education Commission honors a teacher and student each month during the school year. Winners are selected from those nominated by parents, students, teachers or school administrators. Youth Excellence Award winners must be a high school senior living in Germantown but can attend any school.

Teacher of the Month award winners must teach in a public or private school within Germantown. Awards are presented monthly during meetings of the Germantown Board of Mayor and Aldermen. The Teacher of the Month award is sponsored by Principle Toyota.