CHS Spanish Teacher of the Year fosters love of language



Spanish teacher Ms. Van Arsdale is the 2021 Teacher of the Year.

After Spanish teacher Courtney Van Arsdale began teaching at Communications High School in 2018, she quickly connected with the unique culture of the school.

Many students became enamored with her engaging classroom environment and fun-loving personality.

Sophomore Kate Feigus of Brielle believes Van Arsdale won Teacher of the Year because of, “the relationships that she builds with each student. That is what differentiates her.”

“I have grown to love Spanish class because of the bubbly energy that Ms. Van Arsdale brings,” said sophomore Brenna Furniss of Spring Lake Heights.

This award was the result of several years of dedication and a multi-month long procedure. Guidance counselor Sandra Gidos comments on the lengthy procedure it takes to pick the award-winner.

“To nominate a teacher, the nomination form had to include a rationale for the recommendation,” Gidos said. “The district selection committee reviewed all nominations and used…[a] rubric to choose each school’s Teacher of the Year recipient.”

Van Arsdale, like many teachers, persevered through the challenges that accompanied virtual learning last year, but this didn’t stop her from showing compassion towards the CHS community, especially when students were back in-person.

Toward the beginning of the year, Van Arsdale covered the classes of fellow Spanish teacher Sabina Campbell and took
on the role of Class of 2025 Advisor.

“She brings a fun presence to the school and works hard to make sure the grade benefits from our fundraisers on a deeper scale than just the money we make from it,” said Class of 2025 president, Ori Rosmarin of Ocean Township, who works closely with Van Arsdale on class fundraisers and events. “I think that adds a lot to the experience of being on council and in the grade. She makes going to school a really enjoyable experience.”

To the large number of students that have come to love Van Arsdale for her distinctive ability to keep Spanish class captivating that ultimately resulted in her recognition: “I want to thank you guys, or to whomever nominated me.”