Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Atlantic County Recognition Luncheon

Douglas Groff, Galloway Township Superintendent, Karen Casselman, Atlantic County, Teacher of the Year, 2009, Maryann Woods-Murphy, NJ TOY 2009-2010, Tina Colombo, Atlantic County, Teacher of the Year, 2010, Thomas J. Dowd, Executive County Superintendent, Atlantic County.

I traveled to Galloway Twsp today to a wonderful celebration of the Atlantic County Teachers and Educational Services Professionals at the Carriage House. The catering hall was a lovely venue which provided us with the space and opportunity to focus on what matters most in education today - the teaching and learning that is making a difference.

Everyone was thrilled to be together to share stories of our favorite teachers and students. Right now, the public is very engaged in a campaign of negativity towards teachers so this morning, which gave us a chance to cherish the success of our educators, was welcome indeed!

At the end of the day, the future of this profession will be narrated by the educators and students most engaged in it.

There are many hot shot educational reformers out there today who boast a high profile degree, a few years in education and a lot of drastic proposals for a quick fix to the most pressing issues of our day. Though these ideas are exciting at times and should be considered, reforms that work will need to come from all stake holders. We will need to respect and cherish the educators who are spending their entire working lives with our children. Doesn't this make sense?

Being with the Atlantic County Teachers of the Year was a shot of optimism in hard times. Looking out from my podium at these dedicated educators was an honor and a privilege.

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