Congratulations to Colleen Pancake
Congratulations to Colleen Pancake
Posted on 11/08/2017

Rogers High Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) teacher Colleen Pancake is a natural leader who provides academic rigor for each of her students, yet is also there to provide social and emotional support.

Pancake has been a teacher in Puyallup for the past eight years — five years at Puyallup High where she taught English and the last three years at Rogers. She is also the Assistant Volleyball Coach at The Evergreen State College in Olympia.

“Colleen Pancake has an absolute passion for her work as an educator! She works with each student to help them realize their potential and future goals. She does everything in her power to even the playing field for her students who may not have the home support,” said Rogers Principal Jason Smith.

As an AVID teacher, Pancake’s students loop with her for three years – meaning she has the same students from tenth through twelfth grade. She said spending three years with students allows her to see amazing growth, positive change, and successes.

“My kids inspire me so much. I am amazed at their strength and courage despite the roadblocks they face. These kids have the grit, drive, and determination to succeed despite any obstacles they face.”
Colleen Pancake, Rogers High AVID teacher

She is a proponent of using AVID strategies for all students. “I love being able to provide them with opportunities to visit college campuses and college fairs to help in their decision making process. It is truly like a family,” said Pancake. In the past three years, 100 percent of Pancake’s AVID students have been accepted to either a four-year university or two-year college upon graduating.

Pancake is known for her positive connections with staff members at Rogers. Under her leadership the staff created a building-wide program where students declare their post high school plans, and are greeted by representatives from their prospective universities, military representatives, as well as apprenticeship programs, according to Smith.

In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her family, coaching volleyball, traveling, and being outdoors.

“She simply doesn’t rest until she has reached every student and helped them realize their dreams. We always look forward to connecting with Colleen to hear of her latest student success story!”
Rogers Principal Jason Smith

Mrs. Pancake received a surprise visit recently from Superintendent Yeomans when the announcement was made during our staff meeting. Amid cheers and applause from her peers Dr. Yeomans highlighted why Colleen deserves the honor and presented her with a certificate for professional development and a garden basket of plants.

The Teacher of the Year award program is designed to recognize a professional classroom teacher who has made an outstanding contribution to the education of children. To be eligible for the nomination a teacher must be employed full-time in a certificated position, spend at least 50 percent of their time in a classroom setting with students, and hold a current teaching certificate.

On November 6, with family and staff in attendance, Mrs. Pancake was honored by the Puyallup School Board during its regularly scheduled meeting. Principal Jason Smith introduced her, described why she is so deserving of the recognition, and presented Colleen with an engraved plaque.