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Academic Standout Week of 12/7: Chanah Katz

Academic Standout Presentation for December 7th, 2020

It is with great enthusiasm that the KMS teaching faculty recognizes Chanah Katz as our Academic Standout for this week! Chanah is a U16 Women’s Alpine athlete, who comes to us from Epping, New Hampshire. Chanah received several strong nominations from her teachers, each of which praised her for her incredibly strong academic skills, dedicated work ethic, and her amazing studentship. All agree that this young woman represents the best of our academic program, and are incredibly proud of the work she accomplished so far this year.

Full-Term Math and Science teacher Adam Boshart was the first to put forward a nomination for Chanah this week. Adam states, “Chanah has been nothing short of outstanding in Earth Science thus far. She began remotely for about a month, and, though most students struggle to stay on pace in this circumstance, she didn't lose a single step. In fact, she managed to stay two steps ahead. This is typical of Chanah as a student. She is always thinking about what's next, and why we are learning what we're currently learning. She understands that there's always purpose in the lesson, and that the lesson has a requisite end-goal.

Aside from her studentship, Chanah has consistently been consciously present and aware of what's going on around her. She has a great appreciation for the educators who take the time to work with her, more so than most students her age. Maybe the best way to explain it is "empathically 'woke". Congrats, Chanah! This award is more than well deserved, it is rightfully earned!”

English Department Co-Chair Nate Clifford seconded Chanah’s nomination. Nate writes, “"Write more!" The ubiquitous command that began as a request, a begging and pleading with my students, has gradually degraded into a war of wills. My will to increase their comfort, endurance and vocabulary, and theirs; to finish the assignment with time to maybe hit one more run on the slopes. It seems that in the battle for their interest, English falls slightly below dish-duty. How surprising then, to discover the obsessive loquaciousness within Chanah. I was so taken-aback by the furious tapping on her keyboard during a timed 5 minute response at the beginning of class that I decided not to say anything about the time-limit. I was so happy to see her level of engagement, that it wasn't until nearly 20 minutes later, that I realized she was still rattling away. I panicked. Who was this student? Didn't she realize the time was up 15 minutes ago? Her paragraph was quickly spilling over to the next page.

In my time teaching, rare-to-never have I had to tell a student to actually write LESS. Indeed, I still don't know if that is a good thing to tell a student. But then again, almost never have I experienced a student with the drive, passion and desire to connect that Chanah brings with her every day. She is a gift to any academic, she challenges us all to persist, even when we think our work is done. But most impressively, I think, she does so in a humble way that does not overwhelm others or dominate less confident speakers. Chanah is collaborative, and builds, expands and encourages us all to keep going. While her tenacity is sometimes shocking, it is also inspiring, and perhaps a great reminder that there is just a little more in all of us. :)”

World Languages teacher and Global Citizens Program Coordinator Malena Agin put forth a third nomination. Malena reflects, “Chanah is a pleasure to teach. She is humble and she is kind. She is not afraid to make mistakes. She steps outside of her comfort zone every day and that is why she continues to surprise herself every day, making great progress along the way.”

Social Studies Department Co-Chair Courtney O’Keefe also supported Chanah’s nomination. Courtney comments, “I have not known Chanah for a long period of time as I recently transitioned to be her Western Humanities teacher this Winter. Prior to my transition, my Co-Chair Ian Groezinger told me to watch this young woman. She was described as a kind, smart, and capable student, who is dedicated to her education. And from our very first class, Chanah has proven this to be true. I have never received such a warm welcome from a new student before. I walked into my first Western Humanities class nervous, but Chanah’s kind hello helped put me at ease as I navigated introducing myself and our unit on Rome. From then on, Chanah has participated frequently in class, contributing great perspective and discussion. Whenever she has been assigned to work, she completely focuses on the task at hand and repeatedly uses her resources to accomplish the goals of the assignment. Overall, I have been impressed during this short time in her commitment to her school work and her kind nature. I look forward to what the rest of the year will bring! Congrats, Chanah! Way to go!!”

Rounding out this strong list of nominations is Social Studies Department Co-Chair and Middle School Humanities teacher Ian Groezinger. Ian states, “Chanah has been stellar since day one. Whether joining class in person or remotely, Chanah is constantly able to contribute meaningful thoughts and insights to the given topic and themes of the day. Chanah has shown a strong ability to think, organize, and write analytically. In addition, Chanah has been making steady improvements in the realm of public speaking.”

Congratulations, Chanah! We are extremely proud of you! Great work!





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