Choir teacher announced as a candidate for teacher of the year

Students attribute Myszkowski’s success to his passion, welcoming classroom environment


Henry Nelson

Choir teacher John Myszkowski speaks to his students Jan. 31. Myszkowski is currently a candidate for the Minnesota Teacher of the Year Award.

Gabriel Kaplan and Noah Orloff

Choir teacher John Myszkowski said he was overjoyed upon hearing of his nomination for the Minnesota Teacher of the Year Award and feels incredibly grateful to Park for giving him the opportunity to succeed.

“I’m very moved and touched by the outpouring of people that have said congratulations,” Myszkowski said. “Especially because it’s my 29th year of teaching, so I’ve done this for a long time. I’ve been super fortunate in the successes I’ve had with students and within the district.”

Sophomore Sophie Davis, who sings with Concert Choir and Park Singers, said Myszkowski’s classroom helps students learn. 

“It’s a really fun environment where it’s OK to make mistakes and learn from them, and there’s good constructive criticism,” Davis said.

According to Myszkowski, the process to become the official teacher of the year is quite arduous, requiring nominated teachers to partake in several stages of essays, interviews and more.

“You initially receive a nomination. Then once you compile the portfolio, you become a candidate for teacher of the year,” Myszkowski said. “So at this point, I’m beyond the nomination because I did submit a portfolio, so I would be considered a candidate.”

Senior Euan Lim said Myszkowski deserves the honor for his hard work and ability to help the choirs work together.

“I’m actually kind of excited for him because he does a lot of work for his classes. He puts up with a lot of stuff and he definitely teaches us a lot about working as a group, being able to compromise and stuff,” Lim said “I’m really excited that he’s gotten to where he earned this for the work he’s done and he definitely deserves it.”

Davis said Myszkowski’s enthusiasm makes him a valid candidate for teacher of the year.

“Mr. Myszkowski deserves it because he is really emotional, but he gets really excited about what he is teaching his kids,” Davis said. “He seems to be really passionate about it and really likes his job.”

Lim said his favorite quality of Myszkowski is his ability to adapt to various situations.

“I personally like how he is able to be super funny and playful and also serious when he needs to be,” Lim said. 

I’m very moved and touched by the outpouring of people that have said congratulations.

— John Myszkowski

Myszkowski said he is waiting to hear whether or not he has progressed to the next round of the process and feels as if his success is reflected on Park as well.

“I’m grateful, humbled, flattered,” Myszkowski said. “I’ve come to view it more or less like St. Louis Park has grown a teacher that could represent himself, his profession and future teachers.”

According to Education Minnesota, in addition to Myszkowski, 133 other teachers were announced Jan. 24 as candidates for the Teacher of the Year Award.