PHM's First Impact Award Recipients are Honored | Penn-Harris-Madison School Corporation Skip to main content

PHM's First Impact Award Recipients are Honored

PHM Impact Award


Today (Friday, September 15, 2023) Penn-Harris-Madison’s Learning Division awarded their first Teacher Impact Awards. New this year, the P-H-M Impact Award is being presented to educators who have helped their students achieve individual academic growth on their formative assessments over time. All P-H-M teachers across the district are dedicated to helping their students achieve personal academic success. The P-H-M Impact Award is shining the spotlight on those teachers who are showing the most significant overall student growth during the 2022-2023 school year (Round 1 of Awards). These teachers are prime examples of how our teachers and students achieve P-H-M Excellence!


Banks & Horvath
Erin Horvath, Dr. Thacker, & Lexie Banks


The first Impact Awards were awarded to the 5th grade co-teaching team of Lexie Banks and Erin Horvath at Mary Frank! With the help of Principal Christie Heerschop, Superintendent Dr. Jerry Thacker, Assistant Superintendent Dr. Heather Short, Dr. Lavon Dean-Null, Ryan Towner, and Executive Director of the P-H-M Education Foundation Jen Turnblom surprised Banks and Horvath. P-H-M is grateful to the Education Foundation for covering the cost of these beautiful awards. Click here to see photos on Facebook.


Banks and Horvath had the two highest Math growth scores for 5th grade in P-H-M. Banks’s Class went from 3% proficiency at the beginning of 2022 school year (Clear Sight), to 97% proficiency on the Spring 2023 ILEARN. Horvath’s class went from 5% to 90% proficiency. Banks’ class had a gain of 94% and Horvath’s 85%! The average 5th Math grade gain across P-H-M 5th grade was 50%.


As a side note, Horvath’s classroom was Dr. Thacker’s room when he taught at Mary Frank!


Next P-H-M Administrators traveled to Discovery Middle School to surprise 7th grade Math teacher Emma Zerfas. Principal Elizabeth Cunha and Assistant Principals Troy Kauffman and Kevin McMillen helped with the surprise for Zerfas. Her students had the highest consistent 7th grade Math growth of all 7th grade Math teachers in P-H-M’s three middle schools. Zerfas’ students averaged 47% growth in proficiency; the average P-H-M proficiency growth was 28%. Click here to see photos on Facebook.


Emma Zerfas
Elizabeth Cunha, Emma Zerfas, & Dr. Thacker


The Teacher Impact Awards are also a testament to the hard work and outstanding learning and comprehension of our students and the support they receive from their families. That’s P-H-M’s Triangle of Success!


This was only Round 1 of surprising teachers with the Impact Awards. There are many P-H-M teachers to recognize in the days, weeks and months ahead!