Position: Special Education Autism Teacher & Coordinator
School: Enid High School
School District: Enid Public Schools
City, State: Enid, OK
Denise Lavoie was nominated by her assistant principal, Jon Mitchell.
Mrs. Lavoie runs the Autism program at Enid High School. She works with and coordinates a team made up of seven paraprofessionals as they unite to meet the needs of her students with Autism at EHS. She excels at her job, and makes a difference in the lives of her students, establishing a nurturing atmosphere for all, leading professionally, with high moral and ethical standards.
Mrs. Lavoie also sticks with her students as they go to college and enter the force, assisting with any needs they may have. Sometimes, simple things can be complex for her students. They know she is there for them, and they rely on her and her team as they grow throughout their high school years. She has built a nuturing atmosphere through her program, and that effort has helped her to earn the trust of her students.
Mrs. Lavoie is involved with several initiatives at her school that are primarily focused on helping her students handle life transitions. She also spearheads her school's Autism week activities.
Mrs. Lavoie has worked at all three levels of education at Enid Public Schools. Her career started as a paraprofessional at one of the elementary school sites that specializes in assisting students with Autism. She grew to love the Autism program, finished her teaching certificate requirements, and became the Autism coordinator at the district's largest middle school. For the past three years, she has served this student population at Enid High School.
With this background, it's easy to see her expertise in transitioning the students from elementary and middle school, to high school, and into life. Her commitment to each individual student through this transition process demonstrates an unprecedented adherence to high moral and ethical standards.
"Mrs. Lavoie’s leadership within the school shines as she works to promote the needs and possibilities of her students during Autism week," Mitchell said. "She includes the Enid community at large, using social media to promote school and community events. For all of these reasons, I am proud to nominate her for LifeChanger of the Year. I am sure her students would agree that she is committed to their lives changing in every individual positive way she can affect. She is truly an amazing educator."