Skip To Main Content

Staff Recognition Programs

North Kansas City Schools is proud to celebrate the incredible work of our more than 3,200 staff members across the district. From teachers to cafeteria teams to bus drivers and nurses, each plays an important role in our mission to serve as relentless champions for all students. 

Our Strategic Plan charges the district to further grow, develop and sustain an organizational culture where all staff members feel recognized for the important work they do each day: 

North Kansas City Schools will expand systems and structures to create a culture of recognition. - NKC Schools Strategic Plan: Strategy III, Action Plan IV

In addition to the ongoing recognition efforts that occur in schools and departments across NKC Schools, several programs have been established at the district level to highlight employees who go above and beyond. The Communications Department also maintains a working calendar of all recognition days honoring specific groups during the year. The calendar is accessible here.

Two students are recognized by Board President Jan Kauk and Superintendent Dr. Rochel Daniels at the February 27, 2024 Board of Education meeting during Extraordinary Educational Experiences.

Culture of Excellence

The Culture of Excellence program is NKC Schools' formal annual employee recognition program. Each building and department may nominate exceptional staff members who exemplify the district's traditions of excellence and service. Each school site may also choose to nominate one volunteer and one business partner for recognition as part of Culture of Excellence. The nomination process begins in December each year. 

All nominees are named Culture of Excellence recipients and are surprised by Cabinet members in front of colleagues at their work site in late January and early February. Recipients will be invited to a special districtwide celebration in February to be honored in front of their colleagues and thanked for their dedication. 

screenshot from video of teacher receiving honor on stage

Honor Cadre

All Culture of Excellence honorees are also submitted to a districtwide pool for consideration for the annual Honor Cadre, a select group of outstanding employees that represent the "best of the best" across NKC Schools. Submissions are judged by a panel including past honorees, parents, retirees, district staff members and community members. Culture of Excellence Honor Cadre members are announced in late February and formally recognized by the Board of Education at their March business meeting. Honor Cadre members may also be invited to participate in additional programs as representatives of our district, including the Northland Regional Chamber of Commerce's Excellence in Education banquet and the Missouri Teacher of the Year program. 

Relentless Champion Award

The Relentless Champion Award Program is designed to recognize the outstanding contributions of school employees who consistently exemplify the North Kansas City Schools mission statement and play a vital role in fostering a positive district culture. This program honors and celebrates the everyday heroes within our district who relentlessly pursue the success of our students and the betterment of our community. 

Beginning in winter of 2023, ten staff members will be honored quarterly: two from each high school feeder pattern and two from the group of employees who serve districtwide. Recipients are chosen by committee from the peer-submitted pool of staff shout-outs. Each recipient will receive a special gift and be surprised in front of their colleagues and students. We greatly appreciate the partnership of the NKC Schools Education Foundation in supporting the establishment of this new award program.

Additional Programs

Champions of Service: Board of Education Meetings

At each meeting, the Board of Education recognizes a few exceptional employees as Champions of Service. These staff members are peer- or supervisor-nominated and embody our key standards of customer service: efficiency, presence, responsiveness, quality and agency. Each is honored individually at the beginning of the meeting, during the Extraordinary Educational Experiences segment. Meetings are streamed live on the district's YouTube channel. Champions of Service are recognized by job role on a rolling basis in alignment with our recognition calendar.

Staff Shout-Outs

All staff members have the opportunity to shine a light on exceptional colleagues throughout the year with our Staff Shout-Out program. Employees may fill out a brief form online, and a card will be mailed to the recipient, plus their shout-out will be shared with the individual's supervisor. The shout-out may also be highlighted on various communication channels such as the district's website, staff newsletters and/or social media. 

iNspire Video Features

Occasionally, we hear about a story so incredible that it just needs to be told! Our iNspire video series does just that, sharing the extraordinary stories of staff and students. Check out the iNspire page for more information and to nominate a deserving employee. 

Years of Service

At the close of each school year, staff members completing milestone years of service with NKC Schools are recognized in front of peers. Leaders take this opportunity to celebrate and thank each of those employees reaching 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 or greater years in our district. Honorees also receive a pin and gift card.