Richland Elementary's Farmer selected state substitute teacher of year
Substitute teacher Eric Farmer suspected a surprise when coworkers insisted that he attend a teachers' luncheon on May 9 — Farmer's birthday — at Richland Elementary School.
“I thought they were going to sing “Happy Birthday to me,” said Farmer, 24, of Youngwood, Westmoreland County.
Instead, Farmer got $100 as the Kelly Educational Staffing Substitute Teacher of the Year for Pennsylvania.
Farmer, a Knoch High School graduate, is the son of William Farmer of Saxonburg and Kimberly Strobel of Penn Township, Butler County.
Farmer also is 2012 graduate of Seton Hill University with a bachelor's degree in psychology, plus, teaching certifications in special education, elementary education and middle school math.
“I just knew that I liked working with kids,” said Farmer, who went to Seton Hill University on a partial football scholarship.
Farmer also met his wife — Victoria Lombardo — at Seton Hill University, where she is pursuing a master's degree with plans to become a physician's assistant.
They exchanged vows in December and now lead a youth ministry at the Victorious Life Church in Greensburg.
During the last 12 months, Farmer filled in for elementary through high school teachers in Pine-Richland School District. “I've subbed at every school in the district, and the kids all over the district are just wonderful,” Farmer said. “Every time I tried something new, I loved it. I like going into new environments and meeting new kids.”
Farmer currently is filling in for Stacey Carulli, a special education teacher at Richland Elementary School, who is on maternity leave.
“Mr. Farmer handles himself professionally, is flexible, and adjusts to the needs of our building, and has taken the time to get to know students,” said Mary Catherine Reljac, principal at Eden Hall Elementary School in Richland. Reljac nominated Farmer for his recent state award.
“This award is Kelly Educational Staffing's highest employee honor,” said Karen Houseman, branch manager for the Pittsburgh office of Kelly Educational Staffing, a specialty business of the Kelly Services, the temporary staffing agency.
“Nominations are based on performance, feedback and recommendations from permanent teachers and school administrators at the schools where the substitute teachers have been assigned,” Houseman said.
Kelly Educational Staffing honored Farmer for his “outstanding performance and exemplary service” to Plum Borough and Pine-Richland School Districts, according to Houseman.
“Additionally, Mr. Farmer worked 120 days during the school year, filling 99 assignments, 17 of which were same-day requests,” Houseman said.
Houseman said Kelly Educational Staffing employs nearly 1,500 substitute teachers in 20 Pennsylvania school districts.
Farmer applied to work for Kelly Educational Services within weeks of his college graduation and quickly got assignments.
He recommends the firm to any college graduate looking for a teaching job.
“They're really organized,” Farmer said. “They provide tons of incentives.”
Deborah Deasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6369 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Photo Gallery: Ross Township fishing tournament
- Photo Gallery: Ice cream-eating contest at Bruster’s of Ingomar
- Storytelling festival planned for Winchester Thurston North Campus in Hampton
- Franklin Park professor honored for making science accessible to students
- North Allegheny grad named a Presidential Scholar
- Natural playground in Ross fits Montessori model of education
- Richland school bus driver accused of DUI