Modeling merit: First-ever CHS9 Teacher of the Year awarded to Douglas


Bren Flechtner

On Wednesday morning, CHS9 Cathy Douglas is awarded Teacher of the Year for the 2018-2019 school year at the ninth grade campus in the library. Douglas, with CHS9 Principal Cody Koontz, Assistant Principal Chase Vaughn, and Assistant Principal Ashlee Graham is the first recipient of the award for the campus.

Christine Zacuai, Executive News Editor

Hands-on. Everyday champion. Funny. Growing. Caring.


When asked for a single word that describes CHS9 AP/GT Biology teacher Cathy Douglas on a simple but touching video – her students had nothing but good things to say for the first-ever CHS9 Teacher of the Year recipient.


Held in the CHS9 library this morning, the faculty and staff featured fresh and familiar faces who cheered on a teary-eyed Douglas.


“I’m surprised, honored and overwhelmed,” Douglas said. “I just can’t believe it. I’m so happy.”


Opening in August, the freshman campus followed the same guidelines set forth by Coppell ISD for the process of Teacher of the Year.


“This is a close-knit group and we’re a family,” CHS9 Principal Cody Koontz said. “As such, we had really good nominations this year.”


Nominees for the award this year include English I teacher Deb Sartin, World Geography teacher Brittany Scruggs, and AP Human Geography teacher Ryan Simpson.


A fervent supporter in Douglas’s hard work and passion, husband Trey Douglas found it hard to even keep the good news to himself at home – ultimately surprising her at the ceremony.


“It’s awesome. She’s just a really good person everywhere she’s at,” Mr. Douglas said.


For future teachers, Douglas advises to teach with sincerity, but above all, prioritize student-teacher connections.


“The relationship piece and engaging kids in their lessons,” Douglas said.

“Every kid is important and every child matters. That’s just what I believe.”

— AP/GT Biology teacher Cathy Douglas


A veteran who “bleeds red”, Douglas has spent 27 years of her life in education, with 18 of these years being in CISD teaching biology. Douglas also leads as the coordinator for CHS9 Science Fair and sponsor for the CHS9 Science Olympiad Team.


“My absolute passion is to pass on the love of science education to students,” Douglas said. “I’m so lucky to do that everyday.”


Overseeing the judging process, Koontz and administration owe the accomplishments of the award to the wide selection of well qualified nominees on campus.


“It’s bittersweet in that we have so many amazing teachers, so it’s hard to single one out,” Koontz said. “In the same breath, I’m so proud to see them nominate one another.”