Teachers of the Week

Heather Iles

Heather Iles

  • School: Lyon Elementary School
  • Teaches: Structured Academic Integrated Learning (SAIL) program teacher
  • Favorite Player: Walter Payton
Ryan Talaga

Ryan Talaga

  • School: Hickory Creek Middle School
  • Teaches: Physical Education
  • Favorite Player: Brian Urlacher

x Close

1 2 3 4

Heather Iles

  • School: Lyon Elementary School
  • Teaches: Structured Academic Integrated Learning (SAIL) program teacher
  • Favorite Player: Walter Payton

“Our son has been blessed with many amazing teachers, but no one has had a bigger impact on his life than Heather Iles. ‘Ms. Heather’ was his SAIL classroom teacher at Lyon from kindergarten through 2nd grade. She consistently represented a safe place for him — knowing how and when to push him out of his comfort zone and when to let him rest in his space. She’s cool, fun, kind, caring, silly, serious, and pretty much every other quality you’d want in a special needs teacher,” said Cori Mohr. “‘Ms. Heather’ has a gift for seeing a child for who they are deep inside, even if they struggle to find a way to show their true potential.” Mohr nominated Iles for the Symetra Heroes in the Classroom® award. “Heather Iles has helped our son blossom into a confident, outgoing, school-loving boy who will continue to thrive on the building blocks she spent three hard-fought years helping him build,” said Mohr. “The impact Ms. Iles has had on our son — and our family — is only partly about education; it’s much more about empowering us to push past the plateaus and finding ways to grow and thrive. With her encouragement and support, we have been able to advocate for and access things we never thought possible for our son, both in and out of the classroom.”

x Close

1 2 3 4

Ryan Talaga

  • School: Hickory Creek Middle School
  • Teaches: Physical Education
  • Favorite Player: Brian Urlacher

All of Hickory Creek’s students want to have Ryan Talaga as their gym teacher — he is one of a kind! He empowers children of all abilities to participate and feel good about themselves in gym class. Somehow, he gets kids who don't think they are ‘good’ at athletics to join in and enjoy PE, probably for the first time in their lives,” said Alicia Naughton, a parent of one of Talaga’s former students. “Mr. Talaga instills a joy for physical activity in the students with his enthusiasm and inclusiveness. He makes every student feel capable and accepted. His classes are a blast!” Naughton nominated Talaga for the Symetra Heroes in the Classroom® award.