EHPS Health and PE Teachers Earn 2023 Statewide Awards
Posted on 11/16/2023
EHPS Award Winners

Three East Hartford Public Schools teachers will be receiving statewide awards at the Connecticut Association of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (CTAHPERD) State Conference on November 16.

O’Brien Elementary School Health and Physical Education Teacher Meghan Christopher has been named the Elementary Physical Education Teacher of the Year for 2023.

East Hartford Middle School Health and PE teachers Nykia Walton and Sean Hurley are both being recognized as CTAHPERD’s Outstanding New Professionals.


2023 award winners


Meghan Christopher
O’Brien Elementary School
Elementary Physical Education Teacher of the Year 2023

Meghan Christopher has been an educator in East Hartford Public Schools since August of 2019. She is known for her in-depth curriculum knowledge and ability to work collaboratively and successfully with students, parents, faculty and staff, both in district and statewide. EHPS Supervisor of K-12 Health & Physical Education Tracey Stefano says Christopher has emerged as a true and respected leader in our profession, consistently seeking out opportunities to lead and empower others.

She has planned, developed and facilitated professional development workshops for members of her department as well as district and out of district professionals. She has also presented several times at CTAHPERD’s annual conference and facilitated other HPE learning sessions throughout Connecticut.

Last year, Meghan coordinated several health and physical activity programs, such as Family Fitness Night, SEL Olympics, School Newscast, Theatre Production, Get Outside to Play for Mental Health, Field Day and other parent programs and activities. She worked with her department and school colleagues to plan and develop monthly parent and family programming to increase their involvement and engagement within the health and physical education program and school. Meghan has worked hard to establish and cultivate a learning environment that is inclusive and differentiated to meet the diverse needs of her students. She continues to explore and implement a variety of instructional strategies for all students to find success.

Sean Hurley
East Hartford Middle School
Outstanding New Professional Award                     

Sean Hurley’s work as a teacher in East Hartford is defined by his commitment to promoting excellence within his personal and professional responsibilities. During his time at EHMS thus far, he has shown a lot of initiative. He volunteered to serve on EHMS’s School Health & Wellness Council, is a member of our secondary Health and PE curriculum writing team, and is involved with planning and implementing summer school programming.

Mr. Hurley always has the best interests of the students and vision of the district in mind when interacting in the educational environment. The collaborative partnership that Hurley and his colleagues developed has helped to secure new materials and grant resources for the school district. Hurley and the team’s priority is to build a program that is inclusive to all students, incorporates student choice and voice, and provides meaningful and authentic learning experiences that increase student engagement and success.

EHPS Supervisor of K-12 Health & Physical Education Tracey Stefano says Hurley’s passion and enthusiasm, along with his growth mindset, will help him advance both professionally and in advocating for quality Health & PE programming and curricula.

Nykia Walton
East Hartford Middle School
Outstanding New Professional Award                    

Nykia Walton joined East Hartford Public Schools as a Health and Physical Education teacher at East Hartford Middle School last year. Her firm but friendly attitude motivates her students to want to participate and become highly engaged with each unit, lesson and activity that she plans and implements. Walton skillfully engages students in their learning by providing well-designed, student-centered and student-directed instruction. She creates lessons that are standards and skills-based designed to meet the needs of all of her students.

She and her colleagues have worked collaboratively together to develop and deliver instruction through blended learning strategies to increase participation and academic success. She is very reflective and has adapted and revised her instructional delivery as needed based on data and student progress. Walton continues to work collaboratively with her department colleagues to create and develop units of instruction that are skills-based and aligned with SEL and National and State Standards and performance indicators.

EHPS Supervisor of K-12 Health & Physical Education Tracey Stefano says her dedication and enthusiasm for the teaching profession, positive attitude, flexibility and her desire to continue learning and growing are her greatest strengths.