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Wizards Spotlight Student, Teacher

Essay contest winner from West Potomac High School.

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West Potomac math instructor John Glaze and Alexandra Butler.

The Washington Wizards held a special presentation Monday, April 13, during their last home game of the season honoring three metro Washington students and the teachers who have inspired them — including student Alexandra Butler and her math teacher John Glaze from West Potomac High School.

The Wizards and the Center for Inspired Teaching sponsored an essay contest for area students who were asked to write about a teacher who had inspired them. Three essays, each from a different school level, were chosen as winners. More than 600 essays were submitted.

Alexandra said that the essay contest was offered as extra credit assignment by her AP English teacher.

Alexandra is currently one of the four editor-in-chiefs of the school yearbook. The yearbook having been judged a gold class yearbook for the past 10 year was recently placed in the Virginia Hall of Fame. In addition to the yearbook Alexandra is also captain of the varsity soccer team.

Each winner and her teacher will receive a prize package from the Washington Wizards and Center for Inspired Teaching. All students who entered the contest, and the teachers they wrote about, received free tickets to the game Monday.

Middle school and elementary school winners were: Mia De Jesus-Martin, from Stuart-Hobson Middle School in Washington, D.C. and her sixth grade reading teacher Nzingha Tingling-Clemmons and

Armani Noble, from Garrison Elementary School in Washington, D.C. and her third grade teacher Janice Schuler.

<b>Recognizing Mr. Glaze</b>

Students deal with teachers on a daily basis. However, few leave a lasting impact on the students to which they will remember for the rest of their life. One teacher in my education thus far though has made that connection for me. He has inspired me both in the classroom and outside in the world. Math is normally a class many students dread. This teacher, on the other hand, taught me to enjoy math and see the real world connections in each problem. He taught problem solving skills that can be used in any situation. He also pushed me to succeed. While some teachers will give up on a struggling student, he works with each and every student in order to help them thrive and fully understand the subject. This teacher has also been dealing with a difficult situation outside of the classroom. His wife recently passed away due to a longtime disease. Some may give up and take time off, but his dedication to his students showed when he returned back to school a week after her passing. His strength inspires me in everything I do. He is truly a great teacher with the ability to inspire anyone.

<b>By Alexandra Butler age 16, grade 11</b>

West Potomac High School in Alexandria, VA