Combining Fun with Fundamentals: Innovative Education Programs in the 21st Century

We recently talked to Joe Pizzo, an English educator at Black River Middle School in Chester, New Jersey. His NEA Foundation Learning and Leadership grant helped him develop a project that’s still engaging students years later, so we wanted to learn more about his ideas! Here’s what he told us. We’ve included some of his students’ projects for you to see as well.

Tell us about your NEA Foundation grant project.

After my students read Lois Lowry’s The Giver, we

Winners of The NEA Foundation's CarrotTop and LimeHead #NEARA16 Photo Contest

We know you’ve been waiting to find out who won our #NEAFCarrotTop and #NEAFLimeHead social media photo contest, held during the NEA Representative Assembly in Washington, D.C., from July 2-6, 2016. Well, the winners are in! 

We asked

4 Hot Education Grants to Apply for This Summer

By Jesse Graytock
The NEA Foundation Grants Manager

In May, we tipped you off to 11 awesome education grants to apply for this summer. As the temperatures ramp up, we thought we’d do the same with 4 more hot education grants for you to check out as you try to keep cool. Have a look and start

5 Elementary Global Competency Lesson Plans for Next Fall

This post is part of a series featuring lesson plans developed by NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellows and grantees.

Don’t panic.

You still have a couple of months until the beginning of the new school year. Which means it’s the perfect

11 Awesome Education Grants to Apply for This Summer

As final exams wrap up and students and educators part ways for the summer, it’s natural for educators to want to take a breath and unwind from a hectic school year. However, it’s also an excellent time to think ahead and look for

Huffington Post: A Fresh Start, With Students at the Center

By Harriet Sanford
President and CEO
The NEA Foundation

The Every Student Succeeds Act is an opportunity to look at what works when it comes to improving teaching and learning.

Now that No Child Left Behind (NCLB) is no longer the law of the land, education policymakers at all levels are talking about the

Lessons Learned: This Earth Day: Where Has the Water Gone?

By Richard Erickson
2015 Global Learning Fellow and chemistry/physics/alternative education teacher
Bayfield High School in Bayfield, Wisconsin

This blog features the global-themed lesson plan initiatives of Richard Erickson, a 2015 alumnus of the NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellows program. Richard and his cohort participated in a year-long supported learning experience on the VIF

Lessons Learned: Union and District Teams Overhaul Evaluations Tool—Together

This blog series spotlights current teams of the NEA Foundation Institute for Innovation in Teaching & Learning. The Institute supports the collaborative efforts of these teams of local unions and school district leaders by focusing on a single

Packing for Peru: The NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellows

By Kristen Shannon
Innovation Assistant

Kristen Shannon serves as Innovation Assistant at the NEA Foundation, where she helps prepare our Global Learning Fellows for their year-long professional development experience and supports STEM-related projects. Kristen has studied in South Africa

Lessons Learned: Multiplying First Graders’ Love of Math with NEA Foundation Grants

First grade teacher Diane Ward applies her NEA Foundation Student Achievement Grant to rethink math class. Ward and her grant co-applicant, Laurel Donley, who both teach at Clearmount Elementary School in North Canton, Ohio, set up stations with

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Watch the Event!

Educators from across the country traded in their classrooms for a night on stage, where they were honored by more than 900 national education leaders and supporters in Washington, D.C.

 

Did you miss the live stream of the NEA Foundation’s Salute to Excellence in Education Gala on February 10, 2017? Now, you can watch the entire event above!

 

View and purchase your favorite photos from the evening. Did you step in to one of our photo booths? View and purchase your best shots here and here

 

Celebrating 43 Educators From Across the Country

It is our pleasure to distinguish these extraordinary educators with the 2017 California Casualty Awards for Teaching Excellence.

 

These prestigious awards recognize, reward, and promote excellence in teaching and advocacy for the profession. All deserve our recognition and sincere thanks, but we had to choose one for our highest honor. 

 

And the Award Goes to...

Photo (left to right):  Lily Eskelsen Garcia, President of NEA; Gary Phoebus, President and CEO of NEA Member Benefits; Sonia Galaviz; Harriet Sanford, President and CEO of the NEA Foundation; Sharon Gallagher-Fishbaugh, Chair of the NEA Foundation Board of Directors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the evening’s finale, Sonia Galaviz, a fifth grade educator at Garfield Elementary School in Boise, Idaho, took home the top honor: the NEA Member Benefits Award for Teaching Excellence and $25,000! 

 

Five Educators Receive Top Awards

Photo (left to right): Melissa Ladd, of Poplar Road Elementary School in Sharpsburg, Georgia; Stephanie Johnson, of HB Rhame Elementary School in Columbia, South Carolina; Kelly Stacy, Senior Vice President for Field Operations and Distribution of the Horace Mann Educator Corporation; Al Rabanera, of La Vista High School in Fullerton, California; Sonia Galaviz, of Garfield Elementary School in Boise, Idaho; Carol Bauer, of Grafton Bethel Elementary School in Yorktown, Virginia;

 

 

 

 

Of the 43 educators honored that night, five also accepted the 2017 Horace Mann Awards for Teaching Excellence and $10,000, as finalists for the evening’s top honor. 

 

Their students could not be more proud of them! During the gala, videos starring each of these five educators premiered. Watch the videos to get a glimpse into the magic these educators share among their students.

 

Global Kids Honored

Photo (left to right): Host Victoria Rowell; Special Guest Maya Faison of Global Kids; Sharon Gallagher-Fishbaugh, Chair of the NEA Foundation Board of Directors; Evie Hantzopoulos, Executive Director of Global Kids; Jerry O’Flanagan, Executive Vice President, Consumer Banking, First National Bank of Omaha

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The NEA Foundation also presented the First National Bank of Omaha Award for Outstanding Service to Public Education to Global Kids for its efforts to engage students from Washington, D.C., and New York City by exposing them to global cultures and encouraging them to become active citizens in their own communities and in the world.  

 

 

This award recognizes individuals and organizations for their lifelong commitment to advancing public education and is typically presented to those who work outside the field. Awardees have included former President Bill Clinton, Title IX advocate Billie Jean King, and Sesame Workshop.

 

With Host, Actress and Advocate Victoria Rowell

Photo (left to right): Harriet Sanford, President and CEO of the NEA Foundation; Host Victoria Rowell; Beau Brown, President and CEO of California Casualty, Sharon Gallagher-Fishbaugh, Chair of the NEA Foundation Board of Directors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This year, Victoria Rowell, an actress, director, producer, advocate, and New York Times bestselling author of “The Women Who Raised Me,” served as charismatic emcee and host.

 

A former foster child herself, in 1990, she founded the Rowell Foster Care Children’s Positive Plan, providing services to students in: fine arts, higher education, healthcare, financial literacy, reunification programs, cultural enrichment, and family supports. She has received 12 NAACP Image Awards and been honored with the United Nations Association Award for her commitment to education, human rights, world peace, and her support of foster children.

 

That night, she led guests and those watching the live stream from home or at viewing parties in cheering on the night’s biggest stars.

 

Special Guests Take the Stage

 

Educator Craig Beals, of BealsScience, made it snow onstage! Beals, a former NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellow and 2015 Montana Teacher of the Year, wants us all to stay curious.

 

 

Performances by Washington, D.C.’s All Souls Church Choir and Christopher Rice, a cast member in the Tony Award-winning Broadway play, “The Book of Mormon,” wowed audiences.   

 

A special thank you to all who helped us celebrate the best in public education! Save the date for next year’s gala on February 9, 2018

 

Save the date! We hope you will join us for next year's Salute to Excellence in Education Gala on February 9, 2018.

 

NEA Foundation Gala Save the Date