Classified Employee of the Year

Meet our 2018 Regional Classified Employee of the Year,
Picture of Andrea LaJiness      
Riverside Middle School, Riverside School District paraeducator

LaJiness is a 12-year Riverside veteran who has filled a variety of paraeducator roles from the pre-school classroom, to work with special needs students to her current assignment in the intervention r
oom where she began in 2016. Yes, the work can be challenging. But, she says, it is well worth it when students achieve breakthrough or “ah-ha” moments in which everything suddenly clicks.
Read full article.

Teacher with students carving a pumpkinTeacher in front of a bulletin boardTwo food service ladiesTwo food service ladies

The 2019 Classified Employee of the Year program
2019 Nominations will be available in Fall 2018.

The award is available to any classified school or district employee working at least half time. Candidates are selected on the basis of professional biography, work performance, leadership and other factors.

Nomination and application process

OSPI sends your nominee, their supervisor and their regional coordinator a copy of the nomination and a link to the online application. The application includes biographical information, a few essays, a resume and letters of recommendation. Nominees must submit an application to be considered for their region's finalist.

Recipients are selected
Applications are evaluated based on the following criteria:
* Professional biography.
* Outstanding work performance.
* Professional leadership and collaboration.
* Other unique qualities or circumstances.

How recipients are recognized?
The state Superintendent recognizes the regional finalists and announces the state Classified School Employee of the Year at the annual award ceremony in Olympia (mid-April). The state award winner and regional finalists are invited to several annual recognition events including the Governor's Reception for Exceptional Educators.

Former Recipients

2017  Rhonda Christian, Chewelah
2016  Debra White, West Valley
2015  Lee Rainwater, Central Valley
​2014  Angela Spencer, Nine Mile Falls
2013  Sharon Condrey, Spokane
2012  Mary Collins, West Valley
2011  Brian Liberg, West Valley
See gallery  


OSPI Classified Employee of the Year program

NEWESD Regional Coordinator:

Mary Kempel
(509) 456-2715

Congratulations to 2018 state Classified Employee of the Year
Picture of Carla Yenko


Carla Yenko
Central Kitsap School District  (Olympic ESD 114)

Learn more about Carla and other 2018 finalists