Appreciating Erica

We are proud to announce Primary Student Support Assistant Erica Mistler is a finalist in the 2023 Australian Teacher Aide of the Year Awards

This national awards program acknowledges the professionalism of Teachers Aides and showcases their positive contribution to student learning and wellbeing.

Erica has undergone specialist training in America, equipping her to work with student groups with a disability. Joining IGS 12 months ago, Erica is a dedicated, full-time teacher’s aide for Charlotte, a high-needs IGS student in Year 5 who requires one-on-one support.

Utilising her experience, aligned to the IGS model of incorporating students within mainstream schools, Erica seeks out the latest training and knowledge of resources available to support student needs. Our School is enriched by Erica’s experience, research, and communications with specialists in Australia and the US.

Year 5 Teacher Michelle Weir nominated Erica, saying, “As a teacher of 35 years standing, I am inspired by the breadth of perspective Erica’s presence and overt dedication have brought to my class. Erica’s experience and insight have benefitted the entire School as we implement a School-wide appropriation of broader perspectives”.

Speaking at a recent staff meeting, Ms Weir noted that the special bond between Charlotte and Erica had been a catalyst for impressive outcomes, allowing Charlotte to participate more fully in class and activities, including going to the park for lunch and enjoying off-site excursions with her friends and classmates.

“Erica’s advocacy, dedication, and insight have, over a very short time, resulted in the blossoming of Charlotte’s happiness through increased communication, spontaneous interactions with her peers, and extraordinary growth in learning and wellbeing,” Ms Weir said.

Erica’s dedication is also recognised by Charlotte’s parents, with her father Pete commenting, “from a parent’s perspective, we’ve seen the enormous change in Charlotte looking forward to going to school and wanting to participate in the exercises that Erica has come up with”.

We acknowledge and thank Erica for her contribution to our School community. Wishing her every success in this year’s Awards!