2023 Mason High School Teacher of the Year
Please join us in congratulating Mason City Schools ASL teacher, Christie Loucks, on being named Mason Schools Foundation 2023 ‘Above and Beyond’ Teacher of the Year at Mason High School.
For 20 years Mrs. Loucks has been teaching at Mason High School where she was hired to start the ASL program. Her classes are made up mostly of freshman and sophomores. Prior to teaching, Mrs. Loucks was a 1:1 Support Ed Aide for a student with multiple disabilities which included hearing loss at Worthington Elementary School.
Although living all over Ohio, Christie Loucks was raised a Cincinnati girl. She loves the Cincinnati Reds and the Bengals. “Who Dey!” she cheered. She also loves Xavier Basketball. Christie attended Kent State University, initially unsure of a career path. She tried out a few majors ranging from labor and delivery nursing, ASL interpreting and deaf education before finally graduating with a BS in ASL education. “I found a strong connection to ASL through my high school ASL teacher who was deaf,” Christie shared. “I loved teaching anyone signs and decided to make a career out of what I love.” She then went on to receive a Master of Arts degree in School Counseling from Xavier University.
Mrs. Loucks has been married to her husband Craig for 17 years. Together they have 2 children. Jack is a rising 9th grader and Annie, a rising 7th grader. They also have a family dog named Mortimer. Mrs. Louc￼ks loves to vacation in North Carolina, to spend time catching up with close friends and to cook for her family. She also enjoys attending cooking classes or watching cooking shows on tv. When not traveling or cooking, you may find Mrs. Loucks cheering on her daughter, a Comet Skipper or her son who will be part of the Mason High School Marching Band next year.
Christie Loucks finds it rewarding being the only ASL teacher in the district. “I especially like that I get to track with my students and have them for 2 years,” she shared. “The bonds and friendships forged in the classroom have been amazing and fruitful.” Mrs. Loucks spends time personalizing learning around the interests and passions of her students. She communicates clearly and often with them and their parents and uses her relationship with the deaf community to provide opportunities to take learning outside of the classroom. One example, students are able to attend monthly dinners hosted by the deaf community. It is a unique opportunity to be able to practice what they are learning in class.
“Mrs. Loucks is a proactive educator that goes Above and Beyond in every aspect of her classroom,” said parent Jana Surace. “Her warm and friendly personality allows her students to feel included, and no matter how difficult the pace of the material, she makes her classroom fun and engaging,” Jana added.
Mrs. Loucks is a Mason Schools Foundation Grant recipient. Several years ago she received grant funding to hire a deaf storyteller and performer. “We sold out the Mason Middle School auditorium and publicized the evening to all Tri-state secondary and post secondary schools that offer ASL classes,” she shared. “I'm excited about the prospect to bring back something like this again!”
Mason Schools Foundation Board Members are looking forward to future grant proposals from Mrs. Loucks. In the meantime we would like to congratulate her again on being named Teacher of the Year.
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