By Mary O’KEEFE
At the end of the last academic year, Crescenta Valley High School teacher Win Saw was honored by the Small Change for Big Change organization as CVHS Teacher of the Year.
This was the third year that SCBC, an organization composed of CVHS graduates, has presented a Teacher of the Year award.
Saw was one of seven finalists. He said he was surprised and humbled by the recognition.
So imagine how he felt just a few days later when he was told he had been chosen as the Glendale Unified School District Teacher of the Year.
“That put everything over the top,” Saw said.
Saw loves teaching and said he does it without any expectations of recognition, so when the district honored him he was surprised.
“I asked how they even knew me,” he said.
But the district did know him, though not as well as CVHS students, parents and staff.
Saw is a math teacher and has been an educator for 21 years, all while at CVHS. He, along with Dr. Greg Neat, started a robotics team years ago at the school.
“[Neat] was teaching part time and was [working] part time at JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory),” he said.
The 589 Falkons robotics team began in Saw’s classroom. The team competed in FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), which at the time had few competitive teams. Back then, there was not a designated space for building the robotics; the team would build the robot in Saw’s classroom then roll it into a closet for storage.
Having an open classroom is a tradition of Saw’s who keeps his door open for students who need extra help in math.
In addition to teaching, Saw is also the CVHS tech coordinator.
“I go around and fix everything that is plugged in,” Saw joked. “And our district started the GenYes program [Generation Youth and Educators Succeeding]. I am teaching a small group of about 10 students in each class. We address technical needs of the school. The [class teaches] students to [use] applied science.”
He praised his fellow teachers and said so many of them deserve recognition.
“I love what I do and I am doing what, I think, every teacher should be doing. This is such a noble profession.”
Saw will be recognized at the Oct. 2 GUSD State of the Schools breakfast.