Metro Nashville Public Schools, along with the Nashville’s Agenda Steering Committee and the Nashville Public Education Foundation (NPEF), announced today the winners of this year’s Blue Ribbon Teacher Awards.
This year, the focus of the awards was on recognizing teachers doing outstanding work in one of three areas – literacy instruction, support of English Language Learners and teacher leadership.
Winners will be honored at a special reception in March and celebrated through a month-long city advertising campaign. Along with Blue Ribbon status, each teacher receives a $1,000 cash prize – supported exclusively by private donations.
This year’s winners join an elite group of the city’s top public school educators. With their addition, only 192 teachers have received this distinction to date.
“In classrooms across this district we have many life-changing moments taking place every single day due to the expertise, commitment, and caring of our great teachers,” said Dr. Shawn Joseph, director of schools. “The Blue Ribbon Teacher Award helps us shine the spotlight on some of our best teachers and more importantly, better demonstrate the value this community places on teaching excellence.”
In its fourth year, the program aims to recognize top teaching talent in our public schools. Winners are determined following a rigorous selection process that included a review of evidence of outstanding teaching practices by a team of experts.
Applications of semi-finalists are then reviewed by a specially-convened community selection panel.
“So often, teachers tell us they feel invisible or their work unnoticed in the larger community,” said Tom Sherrard, chairman of the Nashville’s Agenda Steering Committee and a member of the Board of the Nashville Public Education Foundation. “What we are hoping to do with this award is to say that great teaching matters – not just to students and parents but the entire community.
“We all benefit immensely from the work of extraordinary educators like these. They deserve the entire city’s thanks and recognition.”
The Blue Ribbon Teacher awards program began in 2014 and is a joint project of the Nashville’s Agenda Steering Committee, the NPEF and MNPS.
Members of this year’s community selection panel were: Susannah Berry, Gail Carr-Williams, Hank Clay, Ron Corbin, Stephen Francescon, Rebecca King, Vanessa Lazon, Rob McNeilly, Paul Oakley, David Plazas, Stephanie Silverman, Brenda Wynn and Nahed Zehr.