Diana Porath, instructor at the Alternative Learning Center, has been selected as the 2017-18 District 549 Teacher of the Year!
Each year, the PEA (Perham Education Association) nominates and votes for the Teacher of the Year.
Diana graduated from South St. Paul High School in 1965, and went on to start college just three days later. The school went all year round. She graduated in three years and one quarter – she had to wait until Fall quarter to do her student teaching.
Her degree is from University of Minnesota, Mankato. Diana majored in math with a physical education minor. Back then, you could teach part time with a minor in an area. She has a lifetime certificate in teaching, which is no longer available to teachers. Today, teachers need to renew their license every 5 years.
She graduated in December of 1969, and started teaching in January at Sioux Valley School down by the Minnesota-Iowa border. She taught there until 1971 when she moved to the Perham area with her husband.
In 1978, she started teaching in Perham – and she is still here! She tried to retire, but then started working at the Area Learning Center. She is now in her 9th year at the ALC.
Diana is married to Deland, and they have two daughters: Illene and Lois. Illene is married to Robb Reed, and they also have two daughters: Emily and Olivia. Diana has a variety of hobbies and interests. She earned her black belt in Tae Kwan do and was an instructor in Perham for four years. After teaching herself to play, she now enjoys playing the guitar and organ at church. She also enjoys fishing, gardening, knitting, and crocheting.
Here are a few quotes from others about Diana's dedication to the school and her students:
Diana was the most dedicated educator I have ever worked with. She had passion for student learning and was very strict. She would not let them get away with half effort. She was on the interview team when I interviewed in Perham back in 1993 (I didn’t get the job!!). She played the role of a student and asked me for help on a math problem. She handed me the pencil wanting me to do the problem for her. It was her way of testing what was important – that the student must do the work with only the guidance of the teacher. Great Lady.
Diana Porath is one of the hardest working educators I have ever had the pleasure to teach with. Diana is always thoroughly prepared and willing to put in extra time to help her students achieve their goals. A true professional in every way.