Edison teacher named 2019 Outstanding Secondary Teacher

Bruegen and Edison principal Pamela Brumfield
Heather Brueggen, left, and Edison principal Pamela Brumfield (FCPS image)

Edison High School’s Heather Brueggen has been selected as the 2019 Secondary Schools Teacher of the Year by Fairfax County Public Schools.

Brueggen received the award Wednesday at George Mason University as part of the annual FCPS Honors Event. She was one of the 12 overall winners from FCPS’s 12 different awards categories.

Brueggen teaches English at Edison, where she’s worked for the last 12 years. In a press release announcing Brueggen’s award, FCPS praised Brueggen as an expert in content delivery and a teacher with a knack for connecting with students of all learning levels.

“Her high expectations for all students are clear, which consistently creates a safe, personable, positive, and supportive learning environment in the classroom,” FCPS said. “Ms. Brueggen does not see teaching as merely a job, but as an innate desire to serve society.”

Brueggen is the second teacher from the Edison pyramid to be named secondary teacher of the year in the past three years. Mark Twain Middle School English teacher Sarah Thompson won the award in 2017.

Other awardees from Richmond Highway-area schools:

Four teachers from Richmond Highway-area secondary schools were named school-level teachers of the year:

  • Maggie LeGendre, Hayfield Secondary School (AP World History)
  • Ron Virts, Bryant High School (History & Social Studies)
  • Freda Woods-Lawrence, Walt Whitman Middle School (Mathematics)
  • Eileen Bell, West Potomac High School (ESOL Teacher)

Sixteen teachers from the Richmond Highway were school-level recipients of the 2019 Outstanding Elementary School Teacher award:

  • Gabrielle Wolosik, Bucknell Elementary School (Sixth Grade)
  • Heather Sable, Bush Hill Elementary School (Learning Disabilities)
  • Shey Gift, Clermont Elementary School (Chinese FLES)
  • Susan Freewalt, Fort Belvoir Primary School (Kindergarten)
  • Alexandrea Neitert, Fort Belvoir Upper School, (Fourth Grade)
  • Diane Miller, Fort Hunt Elementary School, (Fifth Grade)
  • Alfonso Lopez-Marrero, Groveton Elementary School (Kindergarten)
  • Nicole Johnson, Hayfield Elementary School (Second Grade)
  • Deb Drembus, Hollin Meadows Elementary School (Learning Disabilities)
  • Beth Reidy, Mount Eagle Elementary School, (ESOL)
  • Deanna Evans, Mount Vernon Woods Elementary School (ESOL)
  • Arielle Banal, Riverside Elementary School (ESOL)
  • Freda Woods-Lawrence, Walt Whitman Middle School (Mathematics)
  • Pam Jay, Waynewood Elementary School (Second Grade)
  • Jocelyn Buck, Woodlawn Elementary School (Second Grade)
  • Anthony Pikul, Woodley Hills Elementary School (Kindergarten)

Six teachers from Richmond Highway-area schools were 2019 Outstanding New Secondary School Teacher school-level recipients:

  • Levi Barber, Edison High School (Learning Disabilities Teacher)
  • ​​​​​​​Mary Lynn J. Rynkiewicz, Hayfield Secondary School (English Teacher)
  • ​​​​​​​Alexandra Dooling, Quander Road School (Emotional Disabilities Teacher)
  • ​​​​​​​Emma Tourtellote, Sandburg Middle School (English Teacher)
  • ​​​​​​​Kevin C. Lackie, Walt Whitman Middle School (Music Teacher)
  • ​​​​​​Tyler Fabian, ​​​​​​​West Potomac High School (Geosystems Teacher)*
    *Fabian was also a finalist for Outstanding New Secondary Teacher

Eight elementary school teachers from the Richmond Highway area were 2019 Outstanding New Elementary School Teacher school-level recipients:

  • ​​​​​​​Bhendari Moore, Fort Belvoir Primary School (Multiple Disabilities)
  • ​​​​​​​Emily McGovern, Fort Belvoir Upper School ​​​​​​​(Learning Disabilities)
  • Angie Palma, Hollin Meadows Elementary School ​​​​​​​(Sixth Grade)
  • Megan McGregor, Mount Eagle Elementary School (Fourth Grade)
  • ​​​​​​​Michael Abouraad, ​​​​​​​Mount Vernon Woods Elementary School​​​ (Sixth Grade)
  • ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Amy Eckardt, ​​​​​​​Riverside Elementary School (Learning Disabilities)
  • ​​​​​​​Edward Windhausen, ​​​​​​​Rose Hill Elementary School (Preschool)
  • Ambler Goddin, Bush Hill Elementary School (Second Grade)

Eighteen employees from Richmond Highway-area schools were 2019 Outstanding School-based Leader school-level recipients:

  • Florence Harrison, Bryant High School (School Counselor)
  • Erica Beckett, Bucknell Elementary School (Math Resource Teacher)
  • Denise Goate, Bush Hill Elementary School (Literacy Coach)
  • Mark Nocera, Edison High School (Assistant Principal)
  • Teresa Chapman, Fort Belvoir Primary School (School Counselor)
  • Carla Prossner, Fort Belvoir Upper School (Reading Teacher)
  • Tabitha Reber, Hayfield Secondary School (School-Based Technology Specialist)
  • Julia Buckingham, Hollin Meadows Elementary School (Math Resource Teacher)
  • Shannon Dickenson, Mount Eagle Elementary School (Reading Resource Teacher)
  • Debra Wines, Mount Vernon Woods Elementary School (Assistant Principal)
  • Heather Padgett, Pulley Career Center (Career & Transition Department Chair)
  • Anna Macedonia, Riverside Elementary School (Assistant Principal)
  • Stephen Kewer, Sandburg Middle School (Dean of Students)
  • Melissa Montgomery, Twain Middle School (Assistant Principal)
  • Colleen M. Hooper, Walt Whitman Middle School (School Counselor)
  • Lindsay Victor, Waynewood Elementary School (Speech Language Pathologist)
  • Kevin McMahon, West Potomac High School (Director of Student Services)
  • Joanna Newton, Woodlawn Elementary School (Reading Resource Teacher)

Additionally, Groveton Elementary School’s Jim Swoger was a nominee for FCPS Principal of the Year, while Bush Hill Elementary’s Mary Duffy and Sandburg Middle School’s Darwin Barker were Outstanding New Principal nominees.