Hononegah’s Alex Hartz wins 2024 Golden Apple Award


Alex Hart, winner of the 2024 Golden Apple Award for Excellence in Teaching, poses with his students and his Golden Apple Award in his classroom.

Mr. Hartz's second-period Algebra 1 AB class had a significant interruption this morning for a very special reason. 

Mr. Hartz and his class full of students looked on with equal astonishment as the media, staff, Mr. Hartz’s wife and the Golden Apple Foundation filed into his classroom at 9:25 am to surprise him with his award. 

Alex Hartz won the 2024 Golden Apple Award for Excellence in Teaching. The award was presented to him by Paul Von Driska

Bergstrom’s Paul Von Driska presents Mr. Alex Hartz with the Golden Apple Award.

The Golden Apple Foundation honors outstanding teachers in Winnebago and Boone counties through nominations by anyone who wants to show gratitude for how a teacher has had an influential impact on their life or the community at large. Golden Apple receives more than 1,000 nominations each year. 

Alex Hartz of Rockton teaches math at Hononegah High School, where he has taught for the duration of his 15-year teaching career. 

Principal Chad Dougherty recognizes the exceptionally high quality of teaching that Mr. Hartz gives to the students. He states, “Mr. Hartz is an amazing teacher. He brings humor into the classroom, and he connects with all of the students at our Foundational Algebra level all the way up to our Calculus AB level. He inspires kids to overcome their fears of math, and he is a difference-maker in our community. We are lucky to have him.” 

 Mr. Hartz says, “We have three classroom mottos. The first is that we’re going to respect the time that we have. The second is we are going to be self-advocates. The third is we are going to be future-minded. If we can do those three things, we will succeed.” 

When asked what his favorite part of teaching is, Mr. Hartz looked at his classroom full of students, gestured to them, and replied, “This. This right here. Don't get me wrong, the meetings are great but working with the students is the best by far.” 

Congratulations Mr. Hartz! 

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