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UES Teacher Honored with Citadel Heart of Learning Award

The Unionville Chadds-Ford School District is pleased to announce that Mrs. Dawn Oldenski from Unionville Elementary has been selected as the district’s recipient of the Citadel Heart of Learning Award. 

This award was developed by Citadel and the Chester County Intermediate Unit 18 years ago to recognize and reward, but mostly thank, the outstanding teachers in Chester County. The Citadel Heart of Learning Award recipients are selected based on the following criteria: (1) consistent devotion of time and energy beyond the normal requirements of their teaching position (2) initiating, implementing, or administering a new or innovative idea that benefits their students and/or school and (3) providing exceptional assistance and/or support to school or student activities, projects, or programs.

Parents, students, and colleagues were able to nominate teachers earlier in the school year, and Ms. Oldenski received four nominations. She is one of 15 winners selected out of more than 1,400 nominees submitted this year. 

In addition to the award, Mrs. Oldenski received $500 that can be used to purchase supplies and other items needed for the classroom, as well as an invitation to the Citadel Heart of Learning banquet on May 2, 2022.  

The banquet was held at the Mann Center in Philadelphia, where Mrs. Oldenski and her guests we treated to a celebratory dinner and award presentation.  Mrs. Oldenski received her hand-crafted glass award on stage in front of friends, family and colleagues. 

As part of their nominations, a parent shared why Ms. Oldenski is deserving of this honor. 

“Mrs. Oldenski goes out of her way to hear and recognize the struggles the kids have, whether it be sitting at a desk, social interaction, self-esteem issues or academic struggles, and she actions a caring, kind, and fair plan to meet the kids where they are. As a parent of a special needs child herself, dawn recognizes the challenges some kids face in school as well as at home, and facilities learning in such a way as to excite and engage kids rather than beating them down with mundane repetition or punitive homework drills. I have never had a teacher go so out of her way to make all her students feel valued, capable, worthwhile and she does so while making school fun. She is stellar. We need more teachers like dawn Oldenski!”