Innovation in Education Award 2020


The 2020 Innovation in Education Award was presented to Hudsonville High School teacher, Dirk Roberts.

Dirk was uniquely challenged in March this year when the Stay at Home order was issued and teachers began teaching online from home. As a physical education and strength teacher, it is nearly impossible to lead class without access to a weight room. However, Dirk’s passion for his students pushed him to get creative. He held 1:1 discussions with his students to understand what type of equipment they had access to at home and then thought outside the box to develop individualized training programs.

Dirk has created a culture in the weight room and throughout Hudsonville High School, improving the mental and physical strength of students. Through his teaching methods, student injuries have decreased and weight room records have been broken.

Dirk’s dedication and ingenuity represents the innovative spirit present throughout Hudsonville Public Schools. Thank you, Dirk – and all of our HPS teachers – for continuing to lead throughout difficult circumstances!

Each year, the Hudsonville Education Foundation awards the Innovation in Education Award to recognize an individual or group of individuals who have demonstrated a passion for innovation in the District. Nominations open each spring — keep your eye out for individuals doing amazing things at HPS! Looking to nominate an educator? Click here to access our nomination form.

Meet Our Past Award Recipients 

2019 Innovation in Education Awardee: Abby VanMalsen (Baldwin Street Middle School)

2018 Innovation in Education Awardees: Maggie Bandstra & Celine Nienhouse (South Elementary)

2017 Innovation in Education Awardee: Josette Brouwer (Georgetown Elementary)

2016 Innovation in Education Awardee: Rob Thurkettle (Georgetown Elementary)

2015 Innovation in Education Awardee: Matt Richardson (Baldwin Street Middle School)

2014 Innovation in Education Awardee: JoAnn Smit (Riley Street Middle School)

2013 Innovation in Education Awardees: Dorothy Groetnhuis & Lois Atkins (Riley Street Middle School)

2012 Innovation in Education Awardees: Diana Bast (Georgetown Elementary)