From left to right: Jeni Janek, Counseling Specialist at ESC Region 12, Garla Montez, 2020 Elementary Counselor of the Year, Jeni Janek, Stephanie Burkett, 2020 Secondary Counselor of the Year
WACO, Texas - On Friday, Feb. 14, Education Service Center (ESC) Region 12 held its annual School Counselor Appreciation luncheon and named Garla Montez from Aquilla ISD as Region 12 Elementary Counselor of the Year and Stephanie Burkett from Bruceville-Eddy ISD as Region 12 Secondary Counselor of the Year.
The Counselor of the Year award recognizes exemplary school counseling programs and elite school counselors in the region.
Montez, Region 12 Elementary Counselor of the Year, has been a counselor for 10 years. Montez said she likes her work as a school counselor at Aquilla ISD because of the kids.
"Aquilla is a Pre K-12th grade campus and I love working with all the students from Pre K-12th grade," Montez said. "There is never a dull moment and I just want to be there to be able to help them as much as I can."
Burkett, Region 12 Secondary Counselor of the Year, has served as a counselor for 11 years. She is the sole counselor for 212 students at Bruceville-Eddy High School.
"I love the kids. If I can make a difference––one difference––or get that smile, or give hope; If I can help make a change in someone or give them hope––that is what drives me everyday." says Burkett.
Jeni Janek, Counseling Specialist at ESC Region 12, said that the Counselor of the Year event is a special time to celebrate hard-working professionals within each district.
"Our superintendents and administrators lift up their school counselors during this time, knowing that their contributions advance student wellness and achievement on so many levels in our schools." Janek said. "We are proud of both of our 2020 ESC Region 12 Counselors of the Year and feel that they exemplify the amazing counseling programs we have in our Region. It's an honor for ESC Region 12 Counseling Services to host this event each year. School Counselors are some of the hardest working and most dedicated professionals in education. They are very deserving of this time to celebrate them".
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