Though students, teachers, and administrators are currently operating from home, Fort Worth ISD has selected 10 District Teachers of the Year.
In Zoom meetings on Monday, campus principals and colleagues surprised the winning teachers with signs, balloons, and music to announce they were named the 2020 District Teachers of the Year, Fort Worth ISD said.
A panel of judges selected the winning teachers from more than 70 applicants. Each applicant was previously elected by their peers as a Campus Teacher of the Year.
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According to Fort Worth ISD, in a typical year, the District names only one elementary and one secondary Teacher of the Year, but in light of the unusual academic circumstances concerning the coronavirus pandemic, the District has named five elementary and five secondary winners this year.
All 10 winners will have a special Zoom meeting Wednesday with Superintendent Dr. Kent Scribner, Board of Education President Jacinto Ramos, and District partner Central Market, Fort Worth ISD said.
Central Market is the annual sponsor for the Campus and District Teacher of the Year recognition programs, and they will give each winning teacher a prize in their honor.
Though the winning teachers will not be able to attend the traditional teacher award dinner, the District will honor the winners digitally, with special videos and photos on the District website, Fort Worth ISD said. They will also be recognized virtually at an upcoming school board meeting.
The 2020 District Teachers of the Year are as follows:
Jennifer Sanchez - Third grade math and reading, Western Hills Elementary: Master’s and bachelor’s degrees from University of Texas at Arlington.
Brooke Darby - Fifth grade ELAR and social studies, DeZavala Elementary: Bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech University
Carminia Moreno - Fifth grade science and social studies, Sam Rosen Elementary: Bachelor’s degree from University of Texas at Arlington
Amy Craft - Dyslexia interventionist, Carter Park Elementary: Bachelor’s degree from Crichton College
Mireya Cadena - Second grade DLE English Language Arts Teacher, Cesar Chavez Elementary: Bachelor’s degree from University of California Los Angeles
Kathy Elliott - Ninth grade biology, Ninth grade college transitions, Texas Academy of Biomedical Sciences: Master’s degree, University of Texas at Arlington; Bachelor’s degree, University of Texas at Austin
Derek Smilowski - Head Director of Bands, Eastern Hills High School: Bachelor’s degree, Mansfield University of Pennsylvania
Matthew Bradford - Sixth grade Health, Meadowbrook Middle School: Master’s degree, University of Texas at Arlington; Bachelor’s degree, Stephen F. Austin University
Vicky Robertson - AVID teacher, Polytechnic High School: Bachelor’s degree, Texas Wesleyan University
Ray Horton - Geometry and Algebra I, TCC South- Fort Worth ISD Collegiate: Master’s degree, University of Texas at Arlington; Bachelor’s degree, Baylor University; Bachelor’s degree, University of Texas at Austin