Stafford MSD Announces 2018-19 Campus Teachers of The Year

Teachers Nicole Herbert, Maricela Diaz, Djuna Cole and Zenikka Nichols.

The four Stafford MSD Campus Teachers of the Year are proud to represent their respective campuses. They are Maricela Diaz (Stafford Elementary), Zenikka Nichols (Stafford Intermediate), Djuna Cole (Stafford Middle) and Nicole Herbert (Stafford High). On Thursday May 23rd, one of the four campuses teachers of the year will be selected as the 2018-19 Stafford MSD Teacher of the Year.

Of the four Campus Teachers of the Year, Diaz has the most longevity with the District. She’s worked for Stafford MSD for the past 14 years, and has a Master’s Degree from Houston Baptist University and a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Houston.

 Diaz, who grew up in the small Rio Grande Valley city of Roma, recently watched her first group of first graders graduate from Stafford High. She taught first grade for eight years and has taught Kindergarten for the past eight.

During her time at Stafford Elementary, Diaz has gradually assumed more responsibility. She’s currently the campus’ ESL/Bilingual Coordinator.

Nichols is in her fourth year as a Sixth Grade Science/Social Studies teacher at Stafford Intermediate. Although she’s relatively new to public education, ‘teaching’ is nothing new for her.

“When I graduated from Kindergarten in Mississippi, the teacher asked the students, ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’ For me, it was a teacher. I was always teaching. Four years ago, I was blessed to become a teacher in Stafford.”

Nichols earned a Psychology degree from the University of Southern Mississippi, and she will soon be at the new Middle School campus when it opens.

Cole is in her fourth year teaching Seventh Grade English at Stafford Middle. A native of Springfield, Ohio, Cole earned a Bachelor’s Degree from The Ohio State University and a Master’s Degree from Troy University in Alabama.

“I love education and learning,” Cole said. “Coming to Stafford MSD was an unexpected blessing and opportunity. I believe in the power of the written word.”

Herbert grew up in Houston and graduated from Trinity University. She’s in her fourth year at Stafford where she teaches freshman and sophomore English and ESL. “Stafford MSD has given me the chance to grow personally and professionally,” Herbert said.

“We have a  lot of opportunities to hone our craft and reach our students. I want to make sure every child knows they mean something, and I try to balance accountability with grace.”