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iteach honors teachers of the year

iteach Honors Texas Teachers of the Year

Congratulations to iteach Texas Teachers of the Year! 

For the fourteenth year, iteach has identified an Elementary Candidate of the Year and a Secondary Candidate of the Year to each be awarded a $4,000 check. This year out of the 11 elementary teachers and 11 secondary teachers nominated, exceptional teachers Mrs. Brittnee Brandt and Mr. Jose Angel Flores received these esteemed awards!

Each year, teachers are nominated by their program field supervisors, who mentored them throughout their first year in the classroom. Learn more about these inspirational teachers. 

Mrs. Brittnee Brandt

Mrs. Brandt is a 3rd-5th grade Science teacher at Dawson ISD. After being an ICU nurse for 15 years, Mrs. Brandt wanted to find a career that would allow her to have the same schedule as her four boys, so teaching seemed like a natural career to pursue. 

When talking to the principal at her children’s school, he provided Mrs. Brandt with options for alternative certification. When she started her research, she found iteach to be the best path to certification for her. She was enrolled in the program two weeks after beginning her journey to certification. 

As a mom of four, iteach’s self-paced courses allowed her to be there for her kids while finding time to study and complete her coursework.

Mrs. Brandt was nominated as iteach Texas Elementary Teacher of the Year by her field supervisor, Mr. Ron Leach. 

“I love Mr. Leach. I cannot say enough good things about him. He made me feel comfortable, and he is very easy to talk to and work with. He was always quick to answer any questions I had. I thought he was fantastic.”

When asked how it felt to win the awards, Mrs. Brandt shared.

“This has been amazing. I was very honored when he nominated me. As a family of six, it was a lot of money to put aside for school, but we did it because it was important, and we knew it was what we needed to do for our family. It means a lot to our family to be able to reimburse what we paid for school because of this scholarship. I am grateful for the award and for Mr. Leach feeling like I was worthy of it.”

Mrs. Brandt had so much fun with her students this year and is excited about what the next year has in store. She is ready to continue to grow as a teacher and come up with new ways to help them learn and grow in their knowledge.

“I felt very prepared in all areas of teaching. I think [iteach] did a great job of getting you thinking about all those things you may not have been aware that you would encounter or that you even needed to think about before you entered the classroom.”

Mr. Jose Angel Flores

Mr. Flores is a Secondary Physical Education teacher and head gymnastics coach at Odessa High School. At 17 years old, his gymnastics coaches noticed he had a natural talent to teach and hired him on as a competitive gymnastics coach. 

When the pandemic hit, he lost his coaching job. He knew it was time to make a change in his career and decided, “The next level of coaching is going to be teaching.”

“I think the first thing that persuaded me to go into teaching was that I already knew the basics of how to communicate with people, I knew how to motivate kids to accomplish things, and I would have some free time of my own to accomplish what I want. I feel balance is an important part of life, and so being able to give your time to someone else and have your time set for yourself to do what you want to accomplish fulfills both of those goals of balance.”

Mr. Flores talked to a friend who was an elementary school teacher who went through iteach and recommended the program. He was thankful for the program always being there for him and responsive even during a pandemic. The resources iteach provided helped him to feel successful in the classroom and gave him the confidence to pass his exams. Being able to go through the courses at his own pace was key to his success.

Mr. Flores formed a strong bond with his field supervisor, Mrs. Vicki Leach.

“When I met my field supervisor, I was extremely nervous, but we just clicked. When you find people with similar philosophies, you can really build with them. With a passion for teaching, we had some of the same goals. When you meet someone that has the same goals or is like-minded, you can really just feed off of each other and bounce back ideas.”

“She was very supportive, and she answered any questions I had. She would even give me reminders sometimes. I think it was just a really unique experience I had with iteach and getting to meet my field supervisor.” 

To receive the iteach Texas Secondary Teacher of the Year feels like he has accomplished something very great in his life. After performing all his life, he said, “I am used to being recognized for actions, but this type of recognition is different because it was for more than what I can show but for what is on the inside, so this type of recognition really struck me in a different way. It is really motivating and gives you the sense of confidence that you know what you are doing.”

Mr. Flores looks forward to what the next year of teaching has in store and cannot wait to see his students continue to grow.

Congratulations, Mrs. Brandt and Mr. Flores, on your accomplishments! We are thrilled iteach was part of your teaching journey.

If you are interested in becoming a certified teacher, apply today!

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