5 Educators Tips to Prep for the New School Year

By Nancy Kunsman
NEA Foundation Learning & Leadership Grant recipient
and language arts educator at Gore High School in Gore, Oklahoma

We asked a recent NEA Foundation grant recipient what she does to prepare for the upcoming school year. Check out her tips for quashing those first-day jitters and setting the course for an amazing school year!

1. Get Your Classroom Ready

Establish routines! The first day can set the tone for the rest of the year. I like to post my general classroom rules in the room and include them on the syllabus to read over with students on the first day of class. 

Plan ahead. Prepare ahead. Those days

These Educators Are Having the Best Summer Ever

While many of their students soak up the joy of a homework-free summer, educators who received $2,000 Learning & Leadership Grants from the NEA Foundation have been hard at work completing professional development opportunities and preparing

Teaching Indigenous Students At Home or Abroad

By Anna Baldwin
2015 NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellow
and English and history educator at Arlee High School in Arlee, Montana

This summer I had the opportunity to spend over a week traveling in Peru with a group of teachers from across the country as part of the NEA Foundation's Global Learning Fellowship. We had some breath-taking experiences, including visiting a rural

Educator Finds Global Competency Reality in a “Global Village” in Peru

By Jeff Baxter
2015 NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellow
and English educator at Leavenworth Senior High School in Leavenworth, Kansas

Photo: NEA Foundation Board Member Kim Oliver-Burnim (left) and Jeff Baxter (right) at Machu Picchu

The NEA Foundation’s Global Learning Fellows first day in Lima, Peru, was Father’s Day. At least, it was Father’s Day in the United

Peru through the Eyes of a "Hopeful" Traveler

By Terri Butts
Curriculum effectiveness specialist and 2015 NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellow 
Richland 2 Child Development Center,Columbia, SC

Photo: 2015 Global Learning Fellows at the Cathedral of Lima

My eyes are wide open, despite landing in Cusco at 1:30 a.m. on a Saturday night. When we reach the city, the streets bustle with activity rivaling New York City. I’m ready to meet

What Physical Education Teaches Students about Developing Countries

By Mel House
2015 Global Learning Fellow and physical education teacher
Rio Vista Elementary School, North Hollywood, California

This blog series features the NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellows, a cohort of educators who participated in a year-long supported learning experience on the VIF International Global Gateway platform to build global competency skills.

Think Global Learning Doesn’t Apply to Physical Education? Think Again.

By Anne Beranek
2015 Global Learning Fellow and physical education teacher
Iroquois Community School in Des Plaines, Illinois

This blog series features the NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellows, a cohort of educators who participated in a year-long supported learning experience on the VIF International Global Gateway platform to build global competency skills.  Anne

Gates Millennium Scholars: Preparing for College with this Life-Changing Student Scholarship

By Blessed Sheriff

It’s April.

You've tried not to worry about it for months, but now you can no longer avoid the reality. The letter is in the mail, ten feet away from your front door. Imagine opening that letter, scrolling quickly through the page until you

Huffington Post Blog: Unleashing the Fierce Power of Your Belief

By Harriet Sanford
President & CEO
The NEA Foundation

This month, the new class of teachers who will enter the education workforce in America's schools will graduate from colleges and universities across the nation. As more teachers retire, our workforce is skewing younger. Recent college

Lessons Learned: Helping Students Experience the Global Marketplace

By Eileen Sheehy
2014 Global Learning Fellow and educator at Billings West High School in Billings, MT

This blog series features the NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellows, a cohort of educators who participated in a year-long supported learning experience to build global competency skills, culminating in international field study.

Photo: Eileen

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Educators from across the country traded their classrooms for a night on stage, where they were honored by more than 850 national education leaders and supporters in Washington, D.C.

 

Did you attend? Now, you can purchase photos from the evening.

 

 

Celebrating 42 educators from across the country

It is our pleasure to distinguish these extraordinary educators with the 2016 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: Esai Morales, award-winning actor and gala host; Harriet Sanford, President and CEO of the NEA Foundation; Debra McDonald; Gary Phoebus, President and CEO of NEA Member Benefits.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the evening’s finale, Debra McDonald, an early childhood education instructor at Wayne County Schools Career Center in Smithville, Ohio, took home the top honor: the NEA Member Benefits Award for Teaching Excellence and $25,000! 

 

Watch Debra McDonald’s acceptance speech below.

 

 

Five educators receive top awards

Photo: Dirk Andrews, Horace Mann Awards for Teaching Excellence recipient (WY); Pam Wells, Horace Mann Awards for Teaching Excellence recipient (SD); Debra McDonald, Horace Mann Awards for Teaching Excellence recipient (OH); Crystal Brown, The NEA Foundation Board Chair; Lily Eskelsen Garcia, NEA President; Heather LaBarbara, Horace Mann Awards for Teaching Excellence recipient (KY); Mohsen Ghaffari, Horace Mann Awards for Teaching Excellence recipient (UT)

 

 

 

 

Of the 42 educators honored that night, five also accepted the 2016 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!

 

Watch all five videos, which premiered during the gala, that students created using iPads to honor their award-winning educators.

 

Harriet Sanford shares story of hearing from former student—40 years later

Watch Harriet Sanford, the NEA Foundation's President and CEO, share a heartfelt story about a blast from her past — a text message she received from a student she taught 40 years ago — below.

 

 

Hispanic Scholarship Fund honored

Photo: Harriet Sanford, President and CEO of the NEA Foundation; Esai Morales, award-winning actor and gala host; Crystal Brown, NEA Foundation Board Chair; Fidel A. Vargas, President and CEO of  the Hispanic Scholarship Fund; Stephen Eulie, Executive Vice President of Consumer Banking, First National Bank of Omaha

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The NEA Foundation also presented the Hispanic Scholarship Fund with the First National Bank of Omaha Award for Outstanding Service to Public Education, paying tribute to their distribution of more than $470 million dollars in scholarships Latino college-bound students since 1975.

 

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.

 

Watch Fidel A. Vargas, President and CEO, accept the award of the behalf of Hispanic Scholarship Fund below.

 

 

With host, actor and activist Esai Morales

Photo: Esai Morales, award-winning actor and self-described "actorvist," reads tweets from the audience live on stage: "@MarkMautone: @Esai_Morales you rocked it! Thank you for supporting educators."

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This year, Esai Morales, an accomplished actor who appeared in the biopic “La Bamba,” the HBO Series, “The Brink,” and the television series “NYPD Blue” and “Criminal Minds,” served as charismatic emcee and host. Morales cofounded the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts, following in the activist footsteps of his mother, who was an organizer for the International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union.

 

That night, he 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

Photo: Students from the Young People's Chorus of New York City, which now has 1,400 students from New York, ages 7 to 18, participate annually.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With students at the center of public education, a group of English Language Learner students, who participated in a NEA Foundation-funded, high school theater program in Annandale, Virginia, also took center stage to perform Shakespeare. The Young People's Chorus of New York City wowed audiences with renditions from "The Sound of Music," and audiences also enjoyed the music and dance of Furia Flamenca and Torcuato Zamora, an accomplished flamenco guitarist from Spain.

 

Watch the Young People's Chorus of New York City perform the evening's finale below.

 

 

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 10, 2017.