Meet the Current Teacher of The Year at North Kansas City High School

Joaquin Cuni wins Teacher of The Year in Northtown


Cuni performs a dance in the Teacher of The Year assembly

Caleb Goncalves, Writer

Every year, NKCHS allows students to choose a “Teacher of The Year.” In the 2021-2022 Teacher of The Year school assembly, it was announced that Joaquin Cuni, a Spanish teacher of Northtown for 19 years, was the winner.

“It’s always nice to feel recognized by students, that tells you you’re doing a good job.” Cuni said.

Cuni also really values his students individually.

“I think it’s important to have that communication with the students. […] create relationships, that sense of community,” he said.

“I do my best, but I also try to pay attention to what the kids feel; I try to make changes and adapt myself to their learning styles.” Cuni said, “I think when you have that relationship with students, they’re [going to] be willing to do work in the class.”

Cuni is a Chileno teacher and is quite involved with the Latino students in Northtown, as the sponsor of LSU (Latinx Student Union)

“There are not many Latino teachers in the Kansas City Metro Area, even though our student population is growing more Latino. […] But that’s kind of one of my goals, to see more Latino educators in the schools. I think the representation is important.” He said.

When nominated for Teacher of the Year, Cuni performed a dance with his students, who were mostly Latinos.

“It was a significant moment for the Latino students, to see someone who looks like themselves [winning],” Cuni said, “we need to be recognized.”

Cuni finished by saying his plans for the new school year.

“I want to do more things with LSU. I want to work in equality and inclusion.” He said, “One of my passions is to make changes to a curriculum, make it more inclusive, so kids can learn about their history by authors who look like them.”