Peter Kelly (right) from Bristol Federal Credit Union with fourth-grade teacher Scott Ruel (left) from Stafford School as Ruel was awarded the 2016 All Heart Teacher of the Year award! Mr. Ruel is the first recipient of the official “All Heart” Teacher of the Year Award as Bristol just unveiled its new marketing slogan, “All Heart” this year.
Ruel shared with the Bristol Press, â€œIâ€™m honored by the support and to be able to represent our town and the great teachers we have here.â€ Ruel is a graduate of the University of Connecticut and the University of Hartford. Believe it or not, at first, he wasn’t even going to school to become a teacher. He graduated with a majored in journalism and communications at UConn before finding his love for teaching. As a kid, Ruel worked at Mount Southington as a ski instructor which sparked the idea in his mother, Jacinta’s mind that he’d make a good teacher. Ruel was always well spoken, patient and a natural born educator.
Ruel earned his master’s degree at the University of Hartford in elementary education. Although, he did not work in the Bristol school system right away, he found his way back to his hometown. He credits his first wife, Heather Quadrato Ruel, for helping push him to work in Bristol. She was a former teacher at O’Connell Elementary but died in 2009 of cancer.
Not only has Ruel excelled in the classroom, but he also participates in the state Department of Educationâ€™s TEAM (Teacher Education And Mentoring) program where he mentors brand new teachers. Ruel is a member of the New England Mountain Bike Association as well. At the beginning of the school year, Ruel used his creative thinking to make an analogy about his mountain bike while giving a speech at the annual teachers convocation. He shared with the Bristol Press that he rode his bike down the aisle in the auditorium of Bristol Central High School and even brought it on stage! Ruel’s out of the box thinking, and fun personality truly gets his students excited for school! He is an inspiration to teachers, students, and parents.
According to the Bristol Public Schools Spotlight on Education, Mayor Cockanye “described him as a lifelong learner with knowledge he uses to help students grow and succeed.” Mr. Ruel strives to be the best teacher he can be for his students, pushing them to follow their passion as he follows his passion of teaching.
Superintendent Ellen Solek told the Bristol Press that Ruel â€œcontributes significantly in and out of the classroom. This veteran of 12 years serves as a mentor to beginning teachers and helps shape what youngsters learn as a member of curriculum writing committees.”
Bristol and Stafford School is lucky and happy to have Mr. Ruel teaching our children – the future leaders of Bristol, the skills they need to know to follow their dreams and be successful.