Ten educators in running for 2017-2018 Teacher of the Year honors

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Dallas ISD will honor its 2017-2018 Teacher of the Year finalists and announce the winners next week at a special reception sponsored by Central Market.

Learn who the finalists are below.

Elementary Finalists

  • Tamesha Connaughton, physical education, George Bannerman Dealey International Academy
  • Gina Maffucci, fourth-grade reading language arts/social studies, Arthur Kramer Elementary School
  • Sarah Jane Rust, second-grade math/science, Stonewall Jackson Elementary School
  • Josue Tamarez Torres, fifth-grade math, Annie Webb Blanton Elementary School
  • Courtney Thomas, kindergarten, Urban Park Elementary School

Secondary Finalists

  • Jennifer Cambre, Pre-AP Biology, Pre-AP Chemistry, AP Chemistry for grades 9-12, School of Science and Engineering
  • Beth Poquette Drews, mariachi, orchestra, guitar for grades 6-8, L.V. Stockard Middle School
  • Nedra Johnson, science for grades 6-8, Alex W. Spence Middle School
  • Emily Schick, sixth- and seventh-grade Pre-AP science, Irma Rangel Young Women’s Leadership School
  • Kayla Takats, seventh-grade language arts, Ann Richards Middle School

All teachers named Teacher of the Year at their campuses were honored at a reception in October. This group of campus winners were invited to apply for the district award.

The application process included a review of the candidate’s community involvement, professional development, two written essays and required three endorsements from students, parents, colleagues or a mentor. A variety of current and former Dallas ISD school leadership, former winners and finalists and community supporters assisted in a blind review and scored the essays and endorsements. Separating the teachers by categories, the average of these scores lead us to our finalists who were interviewed by a panel.

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