Eric Wagner

Tucson Values Teachers (TVT) presented the October Teacher Excellence Award today to Eric Wagner, a 7th grade science teacher at Gallego Intermediate Fine Arts Magnet School in Sunnyside Unified School District. 

Wagner was nominated by five former students, including Gabriella Valles. In her nominating statement, Valles said, “Mr. Wagner is such a wonderful teacher. He cares about his students and he makes all students feel safe and comfortable at school.”

Wagner has taught for 15 years, the last five at Gallego Intermediate. In addition to teaching science, he runs the after-school gardening club on campus. 

David Nguyen, another former student, said, “Mr. Wagner made me want to look at rocks for a whole hour because he made it sound so interesting. He even let me play some saxophone sometimes during free time because he just wanted to know my interest and wanted me to succeed not just as a student, but as a person. He is the example of what a teacher in middle school should be.”

Tucson Values Teachers spotlights quality Southern Arizona teachers every month. Teachers are nominated through Tucson Values Teachers’ website by colleagues, students, friends, and other community members. Winners of the Teacher Excellence Award receive $250 cash courtesy of Helios Education Foundation, a $100 gift card for classroom materials, and flowers. Wagner also received an additional $100 gift card from OneAZ Credit Union.

More information about the Teacher Excellence Award, including the nomination form, can be found at


Tucson Values Teachers (TVT) is a business and education partnership focused on helping schools and districts attract, retain and support the very best teachers for every PreK-12 classroom in Southern Arizona. The organization recognizes the critical role teachers play in student achievement and the vital influence they have on Tucson’s future. It does this work by raising public awareness of the value of the teaching profession while providing programs that benefit teachers economically and professionally. For more information and to support TVT, visit 

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