Tue, 7 Jun, 2016
The Athletic Director at Jasper Place School has a shot at being named one of Canada’s favourite teachers.
Matt Burrows is among 12 finalists in the Canadian Family Teacher Awards.
A phys-ed colleague nominated Burrows for the work he has done boosting fan support for The Rebels, the school’s sports teams, and for organizing school-wide events and building community spirit.
Voting for Canada’s top teachers closes June 19. Three winners announced August 15 will receive $2,500 for programming and supplies.
“I was kind of flattered, to be honest,” Burrows said of being a finalist.
“It is neat to see that some people appreciate what you’re doing, even outside of your building sometimes.”
This video shows some of the ways Burrows has contributed to his school.
Burrows, 34, has been the Athletic Director at Jasper Place School for the past two years. The father of three children—ages five, three and five months—started 11 years ago as a physical education teacher at the west-Edmonton high school.
His family has strong ties to Jasper Place School, said principal Jean Stiles.
“Matt went to this school, graduated from this school and was a top athlete in this school, went to U of A, and started his teaching career here. But also, his dad was a Department Head here, of science, when my mom was principal,” Stiles said.
Burrows coaches basketball and is also filling in as football coach.
He has helped run high-profile tournaments that attract sports teams from across Canada and the United States. He has promoted Game of the Week events, making and handing out free hot dogs and popcorn and bringing the school’s Rebel Thunder Drumline out to entertain fans. He recently organized the first Jasper Place Bike-a-Thon, which raised about $75,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation and drew crowds of students and staff to participate in the 24-hour fundraiser.
“I was just really, really proud of the kids for that,” Burrows said. “Seeing the kids take part in something that was bigger than them—that was the idea.”
People can cast their votes for Canada’s favourite teacher online.