2021 Joliet Area Great Teachers Announced


Congratulations to the fifteen Joliet Public Schools District 86 teachers who were named 2021 Joliet Area Great Teachers by the Joliet Region Chamber of Commerce & Industry. Collectively, 35 local teachers were recognized at a virtual banquet on February 18, 2021. The teachers were nominated by students, parents, colleagues, administrators, or community members.  

This year’s Great Teachers from District 86 are (top to bottom rows, from left to right): 
Georgia Balderas, Carl Sandburg Elementary, fourth grade; Stacey Basarich, Hufford Junior High, seventh grade special education math; Eric Blaeser, Gompers Junior High, seventh grade social studies; Marissa Capezzuto, Isaac Singleton Elementary, third grade; Arielle Fujiwara, Gompers Junior High, eighth grade math; Marisol Galvan Rosser, Thomas Jefferson Elementary, third grade bilingual; Estefani Gonzalez, A.O. Marshall Elementary, fourth grade bilingual; Veronica Hatch, Isaac Singleton Elementary, fifth grade; Irene Krafcisin, Carl Sandburg Elementary, first grade; Kari Letko, Edna Keith Elementary, third grade; Jane Lynch, Edna Keith Elementary, first grade; Jacqueline Smrekar, Farragut Elementary, Kindergarten; Anna Stone, Washington Academy, eighth grade English Language Arts; Natalie Valentin, Edna Keith Elementary, fourth grade; and Rachel Varela, Marycrest Early Childhood Center, Pre-Kindergarten bilingual special education.

“Thank you to these teachers for representing District 86 so well,” said Joliet Public Schools District 86 Superintendent Dr. Theresa Rouse, “Teachers truly make a powerful impact in the lives of their students and families.”

Combined, these teachers have worked for over 145 years in Joliet Public Schools District 86 schools. The teachers will also be recognized at the District 86 Board of School Inspectors meeting on March 10, 2021.

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