Estes Park Teacher "Honored" for Nontraditional Teaching Style, Impact on Students

Jon Anderson chosen as February Honoree; profiled by Outside Senior Editor, Matt Skenazy



WASHINGTON, DC - February 1, 2018

For Jon Anderson, trust is the foundation of learning. Now in his 16th year as a teacher at Eagle Rock, a nationally recognized tuition-free residential high school in Estes Park, Colorado for students nationwide who commit to re-engaging in their education, Jon’s ability to connect with his students through the nontraditional nature of their curriculum has allowed him to make a substantial impact far beyond the classroom.

This month, Jon’s dedication to building meaningful relationships with his students and his unique teaching style are being celebrated by Honored, a nonprofit organization dedicated to keeping great teachers in the classroom and inspiring a new generation of talent to pursue teaching.

Through his recognition, Jon will receive a $5,000 grant in addition to a $1,000 DonorsChoose gift card, allowing him to pay it forward to another teacher.

Jon also had his story immortalized in a profile article by Outside Senior Editor, Matt Skenazy. In the profile featured on Honored’s website, Skenazy tells of the immeasurable impact that Jon made on the life of one former student, Vidal Carrillo:

“If I hadn’t gone to Eagle Rock and met Jon, I probably would have dropped out of high school,” said Vidal, who now studies biology at Colorado State University and works as an Alpine hotshot during the summer. “I would be a completely different person.”

Vidal’s story started in Los Angeles, where his father abandoned their family and his brother had been in and out of jail. In search for new beginnings, Vidal’s mother found Eagle Rock School as an option for which he applied and enrolled, and where Vidal met a teacher who would soon change his life.

Though intimidated at first, Vidal could tell that Jon was a man of character, someone he could look up to. The two developed a bond that helped Vidal grow intellectually and personally.

“Not only did he help me in class, but he would be there for me outside of class if I was struggling with something in my personal life,” Vidal said. “He was interested in my future.”

Jon credits Eagle Rock with the opportunity to connect with his students in a unique way. Incoming students begin their personal development journey with a 24-day backpacking adventure through the Rocky Mountains. This nontraditional learning atmosphere is what Jon had long been searching for.

“Eagle Rock’s structure allows me to focus on my students as individuals and get to know them on a deeper level,” says Jon. “All of this means I get to build trust, and when we trust each other, all kinds of learning can happen.”

Read how a relationship built on trust transformed the life of an at-risk kid: honored.org/honoree/Jon-Anderson.

Has a teacher changed your life? Honored wants to share your story and give your teacher some well-deserved recognition! To nominate a teacher, visit honored.org/nominate.

About Honored

Honored is a national nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to keeping great teachers in the classroom and inspiring a new generation of talent to pursue teaching. Each month, Honored shines a spotlight on a teacher who has changed the life of a single student. The honoree receives a $5,000 cash award, and Honored recruits a world-class writer to tell their story. Honorees are selected from K-12 teachers of all subjects at public, private and charter schools across the country. Honored’s National Advisory Board includes luminaries such as the internationally best-selling author Michael Lewis, DonorsChoose.org founder Charles Best, Teach For America founder Wendy Kopp and FEED cofounder Lauren Bush Lauren.

For more information about Honored, visit honored.org. To nominate a teacher, visit honored.org/nominate. For regular updates on Honored and our monthly honorees, follow and like us on facebook.com/Honored.org, twitter.com/honored and instagram.com/honored.


About Honored

Honored is a nonprofit organization dedicated to keeping great teachers in the classroom and to inspiring a new generation of talent to pursue teaching. Each month, Honored shines a spotlight on a teacher who has changed the life of a single student. The Honoree receives a $5,000 cash award, and Honored partners with a world-class writer to tell their story. Honorees are selected from K-12 teachers of all subjects at public, private and charter schools across the country. Honored’s National Advisory Board includes luminaries such as the internationally best-selling author Michael Lewis, DonorsChoose.org founder Charles Best, Teach For America founder Wendy Kopp, and FEED cofounder Lauren Bush Lauren.

For more information about Honored, visit honored.org. For regular updates on Honored and our monthly Honorees, follow and like us on facebook.com/Honored.org, twitter.com/honored and instagram.com/honored.

Honored Press Contact

Karen Sonneborn
karen@honored.org
310-738-6879