September/October 2017 – Vol. 30 No. 1

CSTA Member Named California Teacher of the Year

Posted: Saturday, January 1st, 2011

Jennifer Kelly, an 8th grade physical science teacher at Middletown Middle jennifer kellySchool in Lake County.  She has taught for 20 years in her current rural district as well as in more urban settings in San Mateo and Sonoma Counties.  Kelly earned a B.S. in zoology in 1986 from the University of California, Davis, and has also studied at San Francisco State University.

In announcing the five California teachers who were named 2011 California Teachers of the Year, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’Connell said,

Our California Teachers of the Year are amazing instructional leaders who have a great passion for helping students reach their full potential.  They each have unique ways of teaching and thinking that inspire their students to love learning.  The Teachers of the Year inspire me, and I hope they inspire veteran teachers and encourage future teachers to follow their footsteps into the classroom.

The California Teachers of the Year Program began in 1972 to acknowledge the growing complexity of challenges faced by the profession and the need to promote collaboration among teachers to address challenges.  The program is also designed to encourage new teachers to enter the field.

The competition is open to educators who teach prekindergarten through grade twelve.  County offices of education nominate winners through their regional Teachers of the Year competitions.  A state selection committee reviews candidates’ applications and conducts site visits to evaluate the teachers’ rapport with students, classroom environment, presentation skills, and teaching methods, among other criteria.  The teachers are interviewed at the California Department of Education in Sacramento.  The State Superintendent selects the five awardees.  The 2011 California Teachers of the Year will be honored at a special recognition event to be held in the spring.

Said Kelly, “In spite of economic hardships, we live in a very exciting era in education.  With the realization before us of the crucial nature of closing the achievement gap, for the well being of not only our conscience, but for our state’s and nation’s future, we are at a time that a teacher can make a real difference.  Are you ready to play a significant role in equal education for all? As a teacher, the students will inspire you to inspire them!”

Jennifer Kelly can be reached by e-mail at belgairn@yahoo.com.

For information on the California Teacher of the Year program, please visit http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/sr/ct/index.asp.

Written by California Science Teachers Association

California Science Teachers Association

CSTA represents science educators statewide—in every science discipline at every grade level, Kindergarten through University.

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Written by Peter AHearn

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Is This a First: Young Female Teens Propose California Water Conservation Legislation?

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From time to time CSTA receives contributions from guest contributors. The opinions and views expressed by these contributors are not necessarily those of CSTA. By publishing these articles CSTA does not make any endorsements or statements of support of the author or their contribution, either explicit or implicit. All links to outside sources are subject to CSTA’s Disclaimer Policy: http://www.classroomscience.org/disclaimer.