LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Jenna Knapp

Position: Primary Special Ed. Resource
School: Elwood Elementary School
School District: Elwood Community Schools
City, State: Elwood, IN

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Jenna Knapp was nominated by a colleague, Vicki Savage.

Not only is Jenna an extremely professional and dedicated educator, she combines those qualities with genuine love, caring and advocacy for her students. Even as a student-teacher in Savage's kindergarten classroom, it was clear she would be an excellent educator. As she interacted with the children, she challenged each of them to do their best and celebrated their improvements. 

"She is a tireless advocate for her kids. It isn't easy being a SPED resource teacher. Often it involves having difficult discussions with colleagues to make sure modifications and accomodations in IEPs are followed. She is willing to have those discussions," Savage said.

Jenna acts on each child's behalf as she would for her own. She is constantly striving to meet her students' needs, such as when she pushes for a hearing-impaired student to access much needed hearing aids. She has a large caseload and she takes it in stride.

"Her daughter is 18 months old and Jenna plans to join the school leadership team so she will be able to provide a voice for her kids as curriculum choices, schedule, and other improvement ideas are discussed for the school,"  Savage said.

Comments (19)

Kim Marley Posted over a year ago

I have had the pleasure of working with Jenna the last two years. She works very hard for her students. She is a loving and caring teacher, and she works well with other educators for the best for each student!

Judith Wesley Posted over a year ago

Jenna's commitment to the students she serves is evident with everything she does. She has high standards and supports students to meet their goals, and then celebrates with them as they achieve each goal and set their next goal. Her caring heart is evident as she advocates for them every step along their learning journey. Despite a huge case load, Jenna tries to ensure that each students needs are met. Jenna partners with classroom teachers to provide seamless instruction across each student's day.

Phyllis Shawhan Posted over a year ago

She's got my vote. She is great with all the students.

Vicki Savage Posted over a year ago

I am so proud of the educator you are! Blessed to have you as colleague and friens.

Stephanie Posted over a year ago

Jenna is a truly above and beyond teacher! She uses her voice for those who do not have a chance to use theirs. She works very hard to insure her kids get every opportunity they have available to them! She treats her kids as her own! I am very privileged to work along side of her! She is very deserving of all the recognition she can get!

Cheryl Oldham Posted over a year ago

Jenna is one of the most caring people I know. She always goes that extra mile for her students. She has such a large caseload but always puts each students needs first. She's one special lady whom I'm glad to work with knowing her kids come first.

Corinne Shudick Posted over a year ago

Jenna is a wonderful teacher and advocate for those that need a voice. She is caring and nurturing and loved by all. It isn't always easy doing what she does. Her compassion, determination, and dedication to kids shows everyday. Thanks for all you do!

Barb Abernathy Posted over a year ago

While Jenna was a student teacher at Elwood, I served as her supervisor though Ball State University. Jenna had creative ideas, showed compassion and advocated for her students while student teaching. She has such a passion for her students that she opted to stay in Elwood to pursue her career. I am proud of her, and certainly think she deserves this award.

Jill Cole Posted over a year ago

Jenna is caring, hard working, and very supportive of her students. You can tell she enjoys what she does. Jenna puts her students first.

Patricia Murray Posted over a year ago

Jenna is a very caring teacher. She strives to make sure that her students educational and personal needs are met. Jenna is a valuable member of the Elwood Elementary staff. She is very skilled at writing IEP's that meet the needs of her students. Jenna is also an excellent support person for staff members.

Debbie Mullins Posted over a year ago

Thank you Mrs Knapp and Mrs Savage for helping us learn of my granddaughters hearing loss she speaks of Jenna all the time same as Mrs Savage what an asset to our school thank you Jenna and Vickie for everything our school staff ROCKS !!!!!!!

Emily Posted over a year ago

I met Jenna in college and she has always been a determined, genuine person. There is no surprise that she has totally rocked out this teacher gig! Elwood Elementary staff and students are incredibly lucky to have her. Congrats Jenna it's well deserved!

Ginger Robertson Posted over a year ago

If Mrs Savage is impressed then she is a model teacher and has my vote. Having a granddaughter in special education I know it takes a special person to teach these wonderful children.

Irene Short Posted over a year ago

I was very blessed to have a student in her class. My son Zack has a rare disease called PTEN with that disease comes a lot of issues. He has Autism, cognitive delay,and seizures just to name a few. Jenna has been a big part of Zack's life and going out her way to making sure his needs are met. Her door is always open to listen when I have concerns or suggestions. When Zack had surgeries she would always checked on him and seeing if I need something or there anything that needed to be done at school. I can go on ,on about Jenna. There is one thing I can say is Jenna has became part of our family for life because she one special lady that has the biggest heart of gold and loves my child like her own.

Jodi Jones Posted over a year ago

Jenna works with other educators to help accommodate the needs of her students along with the students of homeroom teachers. She takes everything in stride as she as many people to answer to.

Stacey Bock Posted over a year ago

Jenna Knapp efficiently and effectively advocates for students who would not otherwise have a voice. At times, working with younger students includes the extra challenge of also advocating for the child to the parent. Convincing parents that their child has deficits can be tricky, but Jenna is not only extremely caring, but she is also tactful yet convincing. Students absolutely love working with Mrs. Knapp, because she helps them achieve success that they have never realized. Special needs students in Elwood have an absolutely fantastic teacher, friend, and ally in Mrs. Knapp. She changes lives on a daily basis, and I am fortunate enough to be her co-worker!

Miranda Beeman Posted over a year ago

I could never thank her enough for all that she has done for my little guy. She is one of the most Amazing Teachers who gives her all to her children. She goes over above & behind of just being a teacher. I miss her teaching my son.

April Gillam Posted over a year ago

I've had the pleasure of working with Jenna. She is amazing! She offers support and motivation for every student, parent, and staff member. She puts her students first and works at their levels. Not only has she changed students lives she has changed my life too. Her students are lucky to have her. We love you Jenna!!!!!!!!!

Tamie Gobble Posted over a year ago

Jenna is truly an outstanding educator and very deserving of this award. I was blessed to have taught with her and saw firsthand what a difference she made in the lives of the children she taught. I admire her compassion and dedication to all children. Jenna's love radiates through her beautiful smile and patient personality. Jenna has and will continue to work hard to be a life changer.