By Wendy Osher
The state Department of Education honored Aaron Loque as the Maui District Teacher of the Year.
Loque is a social studies teacher for seventh graders at Maui Waena Intermediate School in Kahului.
School principal Jamie Yap said he was excited to have another teacher selected as District Teacher of the Year, the second time the honor was bestowed on a Maui Waena teacher since he’s been principal.
“It goes to show we have quality educators,” said Yap after Loque was recognized during a state ceremony on Friday.
Loque holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Hawaii at Hilo, teaching certification from the University of Phoenix-Maui, and a Masters in Education from the University of Hawai’i at Manoa.
He has been employed at Maui Waena since 2002, and prior to that, taught 6th grade social studies and science at Kalama Intermediate School.
School official say Loque supervises summer credit recovery classes, develops school-wide transition plans for students, and serves on the accreditation committee.
In class, DOE officials say, “Aaron establishes clear expectations for students, who in turn feel prepared and confident that they can achieve daily goals.”
In addition to school involvement, Loque is also an active contributor to youth athletics as a volunteer coach for 12- and 13-year-old baseball players in the Pono Athletic Club.
Loque was among seven District Teachers of the Year selected from throughout the state.
Karen Kutsunai, a Kailua Intermediate teacher, was the Windward District Teacher of the Year, and was selected as the overall 2013 State Teacher of the Year for the state of Hawai’i.
Other District Teachers of the Year included: Paul Holwegner, Kauai District, Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle; Tracie Higashi, Central Oahu District, Hickam Elementary; Victoria Coffin, Leeward Oahu District, Keoneula Elementary; Amoreena Nestman, Hawaii District, Kealakehe Elementary; and Marcus Pottenger, Honolulu District, Hokulani Elementary.