This page is for the use of students, staff, parents, and our greater communities. Check here for any new updates and information affecting our stakeholders and audiences.

November STARS Recipients Announced

ELKO, NEV. November 3, 2022—Jose Antonio Velazco and Ernie Mendez were selected as the Elko County School District’s November Staff and Teachers Achieving Results with Students (STARS) award recipients.

Velazco is a custodian at Mountain View Elementary School.

He was nominated by an anonymous colleague. 

“Antonio is dedicated and skillful in carrying out his duties. He is always happy and willing to step up and take on more responsibilities to help his colleagues,” stated the nomination. “He is an individual who is always willing to learn and enjoys being part of any activities that are presented at our school. He is positive and committed to our school and community.”

Mendez is an eighth-grade earth science teacher at Spring Creek Middle School, also nominated by an anonymous colleague.

The nomination explained Mendez has taught at SCMS for more than 25 years, and remains a favorite among students and staff.

“The amount of dedication and love he shows students is evident from walking through the halls and seeing students excited to say hi to him, all the way to the students that come back to invite him to graduations, weddings and baby showers.” 

“Ernie has been a fixture at SCMS since the day it opened and has never asked for anything in return other than students to be the best version of themselves. I was lucky enough to be mentored by him and picked up some of his bag of tricks that would make any educator a good educator. He doesn’t ask for recognition but after all of these years, I cannot think of a better person to honor with this award.”

This month’s STARS awards are sponsored by Total Eyecare, Keith Frayne with Maverick Gaming, LeeAnne's Floral Designs, and an anonymous donor. 

The STARS committee is in need of nominations for the 2022–2023 school year. Staff, students, and the general public are all encouraged to nominate a school district employee who demonstrates exceptional performance and commitment to the education of all students served by the district’s schools. The nomination form is available on our STARS Program page.

STARS recipient Velasco
Pictured left to right: Superintendent Anderson, Jose Antonio Velazco, Principal Cynthia Etchemendy, Vice Principal Marcy Bjoin, and Trustee Susan Neal.
STARS recipient Mendez
Pictured left to right: Superintendent Anderson, Principal Salli McDermott, Ernie Mendez, and Trustee Susan Neal.

View All News Articles