Swickard named Edison Teacher of the Month

Ellen Swickard

RICHMOND — Ellen Swickard is May Teacher of the Month at Edison High School.

A teacher in Edison Local Schools for 33 years, Swickard started instructing Chemistry, Physics and eighth- and ninth-grade science at Springfield High School during the 1984-85 school year. She continued until the building closed, at which point she joined Edison South High School and remained there through the 1993 consolidation.

Swickard retired in 2015 but has been rehired each year and currently teaches Chemistry I, College Chemistry II, Physics and Chemistry in Society.

She graduated as valedictorian from Jefferson Union High School in 1980 and completed her Bachelor of Arts degree in Chemistry at Mount Vernon Nazarene College in 1984, as well as her Master of Arts in Secondary Education from the University of Dayton in 1990. Swickard has earned 33 credits of post-graduate work, 18 of which are in Advanced Science, which allow her students to earn eight hours of General Chemistry credit while still at EHS. She also holds a permanent certificate from the Ohio Department of Education.

During her tenure, Swickard coached girls’ junior varsity basketball at Springfield for four years, served as a junior and senior class advisor at Edison South and Springfield, and was advisor for Teens for Christ. Swickard restarted the BETA Club at Springfield and continued her work with Mary Dye at Edison South. All told, she headed the club for 28 of her 33 years in education and the BETA students completed countless hours of community service. Swickard and the club became a cornerstone of the Edison experience for the students. The BETA Club’s canned food drives were a highlight of every year due to the hard work of Swickard and her students, and the homemade breakfast awarded to the winners each year was certainly delicious.

In addition, she is active in the community and her church and serves as church secretary, worship leader and mission president. Swickard also shares her love of music with the entire Ohio Valley and has been performing since her days at Jefferson Union, but currently she plays for the Tri-State Community Band (33 years), the orchestra for “Handel’s Messiah” (20-plus years) and in the orchestra for musical performances at Edison, Steubenville, and Jefferson County Christian schools.

“Whenever you take the hike up to the third floor at EHS and walk past her room, you can be guaranteed that she will be sharing her love of science with her students and they will learn from the very best science teacher in the county,” a release states. “Just ask the thousands of students that have passed through her classroom throughout the years and they will certainly tell you.”