Amphitheater Public Schools is continually grateful for the caliber of its staff and how much they care for their students. Staff member Matt Harvey is no exception. Mr. Harvey is a teacher at Amphitheater High School and has been selected as the 2018 recipient of The Arizona Earth Science Teacher of the Year Award by the National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT).

This award is presented annually by the National Association of Geoscience Teachers to recognize and honor educators for “exceptional contributions to the stimulation of interest in the Earth Sciences at the pre-college level.” It is also known as the Outstanding Earth Science Teacher (OEST) award. According to the NAGT website, all teachers who cover a significant amount of earth science content are eligible for the OEST award, but the nominees are then narrowed down to ten national finalists and state winners.

Mr. Haverty is an amazing teacher who has inspired hundreds of students through his Geoscience and Environmental Science classes at Amphi. He is known for hands-on classes and activities, field trips, and demonstrating how what students are learning is relevant to their lives. In addition to being an amazing teacher, Mr. Haverty consistently works with local science research projects and the National Advanced Placement Science Programs.

After receiving a BS in Geology from the University of Illinois in 1996, Matt Haverty moved to the southwest and earned his MA in Education from Chapman University. He has been teaching Earth and Environmental Science at Amphitheater High School ever since, striving to provide his students with a better understanding of and appreciation for the processes of the Earth with the hopes that this will help them develop into informed decision-makers in this era of science skepticism. With a STEM focus and a one-to-one computer-to-student ratio, his classes are hands-on and research-based. One on-going project requires students to track natural hazards as they occur and complete geographic risk assessments for the areas affected; each hazard is then plotted on a classroom map. Students are also engaged in engineering and topographic design projects and applications with 3D printers, as well as a campus Geocaching project and field work in the geologically and environmentally diverse Sonoran Desert.

Mr. Haverty is continually updating his curriculum through community partnerships: University of Arizona Medical Center, Tucson Water Company, Project WET Arizona, University of Arizona Department of Optical Sciences, and Northern Arizona University’s Department of Biology, where he co-authored an article in FEMS Microbiology Ecology, an analysis of biodiversity in Southwestern desert soils. When not teaching, Matt enjoys coaching tennis, mountain biking, hiking, kayaking, and camping in the Sonoran Desert and other beautiful public lands and waters of the American west.

Mr. Haverty in his element.

For more information about Mr. Haverty and his engaging classes, or the OEST award, please contact Amphitheater High School at 520-696-5340.


Amphitheater schools and facilities are places where students thrive academically; places parents want their children to go; places where highly skilled people work; and places community members respect because of the high student achievement, caring environment, and focus on individual needs. Amphi students excel academically because students are taught by highly qualified staff, including the Air Force Association Arizona STEM Teacher of the Year, 39 nationally board certified teachers, Finalist for Outstanding High School Faculty Award, Arizona Earth Science Teacher of the Year, and more. Amphi students compete at the highest levels both athletically and academically, such as the Academic Decathlon 2018 State Champions (5th consecutive year), AZ Central Unified Athlete of the Year, 55 Southern Arizona Science and Engineering Fair winners, and state winners of Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA). Amphi also offers tremendous programs for all students, meeting them where they currently are and helping them achieve their highest possible success.

We invite you to explore all Amphi has to offer, from Preschool through 12th Grade by visiting Amphitheater Public School District home page. As well as on Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram @amphischools#DiscoverAmphi.

Media Contact
Company Name: Amphitheater Public Schools
Contact Person: Media Relations
Email: Send Email
Phone: (520) 696-5000
Address:701 W. Wetmore Road
City: Tucson
State: Arizona
Country: United States