EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) – Plenty of Husky pride for Eau Claire North math teacher Cole Pankratz, an energetic educator who is always happy to offer a helping hand to students and colleagues. Pankratz is the 2020-21 Golden Apple Award winner for North High.
As for Cole, he says while it’s been a rewarding experience helping students navigate through a rough year, he’s not surprised that they have been able to persevere.
“I don’t know if I’m surprised so much, like they are resilient. They can get through anything but the attitude that they come in, oh it’s a great way to start every day. They are the best part of the job and so just seeing them every day, coming in usually with a smile on their face or at least willing to work, on my gosh, it’s awesome. Being so far apart from each part, being told to stay six feet apart, not being to see each all the time, really coming together and helping each other out, has been a way for us to be able to get through things and work together so,” says Pankratz.
Eau Claire North principal Kurt Madsen believes Mr. Pankratz’s computer knowledge has been a major asset in conducting virtual learning with students.
“We have two systems that teachers are really in and that’s canvass and teams meetings. And to make those two blend together, it was a hard task at first but people like Cole have helped us get to a good spot and include all our kids in conversations so we can be part of the classroom no matter the situation with the COVID, quarantines that the kids are in, they are able to come back and be part of the classroom. And a guy like Cole has really helped North come a long ways with that,” says Madsen.
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