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January STARS Announced

Elko, Nevada, January 17, 2023 — Maria Roman and Jeff Sarbacker were selected as the January Staff, Teachers Achieving Results with Students award recipients.

Maria Roman holding STARS award

Roman, a custodian at Spring Creek Elementary School, was nominated by the building superintendent at the school, Tina Gardner. Gardner explained Ms. Roman is very dedicated to her work.

“She strives to make sure that our school is well taken care of. She loves the students and the staff. When I was out from back surgery, she stepped up to the plate. She made sure things were taken care of around the school. She put in exhausting hours to make sure things ran smoothly until I was able to come back. Her work ethic and dependability are like no others I have ever seen. Spring Creek Elementary is lucky to have her.”

Jeff Sarbacker holding STARS award

Sarbacker was nominated by Elko High School senior Lucy Salyer. Salyer said anyone can see the love Sarbacker has for teaching while in his classroom.

“I took Algebra 2 and Pre-Calculus with him last year. I was only able to pass the classes with A's because his classroom is always open to come in and ask a question. He is very patient and will walk you through every step of the equation. Over the past two years, he has jumped on a Google Meet after-hours with my peers and me multiple times to help us understand the unit. He regularly sacrifices his weekends to host open tutoring sessions in his classroom.”

Additionally, Salyer said Sarbacker offers encouragement to students experiencing difficulties outside of the classroom.

“I have been to Mr. Sarbacker a few times to talk about the school’s recent suicides and just rough things with sports and life. I will never leave without laughing at one of his dad jokes. Every day he will make every kid in the classroom smile and slip life advice into the lesson. He offers advice for college and encourages us to never give up.”

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

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 can be found on the STARS webpage on the ECSD website.

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