Over the past few weeks, the U.S. Department of Education, as part of its Teacher-to-Teacher Initiative, has been honoring teachers throughout the country with "American Star of Teaching" certificates. One teacher in every state and the District of Columbia is receiving the recognition for their work in raising student achievement. The following are excerpts from two recent articles highlighting the "American Stars" in Maine and Indiana:
"Trisha Smith received a standing ovation on Monday as pupils, teachers and staff cheered for the eighth-grade language arts teacher awarded the No Child Left Behind 2005 American Star of Teaching."
"Smith’s dedication to her pupils and her teaching them skills to better their communities through service learning are major reasons why she was chosen, Michael Sentence, U.S. Department of Education regional representative for the U.S. secretary of education, said during the presentation. Sentence drove up from Boston to award Smith the American Star, the first for New England.
"‘Teachers aren’t receiving enough recognition for all the work they do,’ he said. ‘You have a teacher here that we’d like to recognize … for her commitment to all children learning at high levels.’
"Smith, a 1996 University of Maine graduate, has years of experience with service learning and KIDS Consortium, a Lewiston-based group that promotes learning through community involvement, Marvin Rosenblum, consortium president, said after the assembly.
"‘She’s one of our prodigies,’ he said. ‘Until someone like Trisha [came along], KIDS Consortium was just words - just a great idea. Trisha made KIDS Consortium a great reality.’" — Bangor Daily News (9-13-05)
"Carmel Middle School teacher Margaret Hollies thought she was attending a school convocation featuring women golfers in town for the U.S. Solheim Cup tournament at Crooked Stick Golf Club. Little did she know the event was actually in her honor."
"Hollies wiped away tears and was left speechless Sept. 12 as Kristine Cohn, Midwest representative from the U.S. Department of Education, named the eighth-grade language-arts teacher Indiana’s No Child Left Behind 2005 American Star of Teaching. One teacher from every state and the District of Columbia is being given the award. Cohn said it celebrates the ‘excellent people who morning, noon and night make a commitment to students.’"
"Eighth-grader Derek Martz said Hollies uses an electric wipe board in her classroom and will have students correct wrong sentences using a special magic marker ‘because she thinks it’s more fun for us.’ Martz said his teacher also puts their homework and worksheets online. If they forget to bring something home, they can simply print another." — The Noblesville Ledger (9-15-05)
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