Five outstanding public school teachers were named finalists for the 2020 Florida Blue Duval County Teacher of the Year. A Prize Patrol comprised of JPEF President Rachael Tutwiler Fortune, Duval County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Diana Greene, School Board members, the Jacksonville Jaguars Jaxson de Ville and the Roar cheerleaders, and local business leaders surprised the teachers in their classrooms.
A selection committee convened by the Jacksonville Public Education Fund selected the finalists from the more than 180 Teachers of the Year nominated by their schools for their results in the classroom and their commitment to their students.
JPEF has built the EDDY Awards, Duval County’s Teacher of the Year Awards, into a yearlong professional learning and celebration experience to help retain great teachers in our public schools. Last year, 88 percent of teachers surveyed said they were more likely to stay in the classroom as a result of their experience through the EDDY Awards. The final selection committee is made up of teachers as well as representatives from the Duval County Parent-Teacher Association, Duval County Public Schools and the community. The volunteer committee members review the teachers’ applications and interview the 15 semi-finalists to make their decisions about who will move forward to the finalist round.
The five finalist are: Leena Hall (Raines High School); Michael Ham (Matthew Gilbert Middle School); Renee McNulty (Jean Ribault High School), Carol Thomas (Dinsmore Elementary School) and Leslie White.
From the five finalists, one will be named the teacher of the year at the 29th Teacher of the Year at the 29th Annual Eddy Awards Gala on Friday, Jan. 17, 2020 at the Hyatt Regency Riverfront
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