Westside Staff Member Awarded Paraeducator of the Year


Courtesy of Westside Community Schools Instagram

Westside staff member Terri Standfill was named Paraeducator of the Year by the Nebraska Department of Education.

Westside High School Special Services Educational Assistant Terri Standfill recently was awarded the Nebraska Department of Education Paraeducator of the Year award. 

The award is open to nominations of paraeducators from anywhere in Nebraska. Standfill said she was very surprised that she won the award, but felt very honored to be nominated.

“I was definitely surprised,” Standfill said. “I knew I was nominated, but to win out of the whole state of Nebraska with so many other deserving paraeducators, it was definitely a surprise.” 

 Standfill has been working at Westside for three years and said she enjoys her job.

“My favorite part of my job is the wonderful students I get to teach everyday and my amazing coworkers I get to teach with,” Standfill said. 

Special Education instructor Zane Cozad has worked with Standfill since 2020. Cozad said that he respects Standfill very much.

“I respect the fact that Terri continuously puts other people’s needs in front of her own,” Cozad said. “She is willing to do whatever it takes to make sure that the students receive the most effective instruction.” 

Cozad said that Standfill is a very pleasant person to be around, and is always there for the people she works with. 

“Terri is a calming presence,” Cozad said. “Everyone feels better when she is in the room. You know she has your back and you know that you can come to her if you’re feeling down.”

Cozad said Standfill is a very positive and genuine person. 

“She will not give up on you or any student ever,” Cozad said. “She can make any person laugh and does a great job of making [everyone] included in any group.”