Monday, April 4, 2016

Teacher of the Year Finalists Announced

The Spring Branch ISD Teacher of the Year Committee is pleased to announce that seven educators have been named as 2016 SBISD Teacher of the Year finalists.

After upcoming committee interviews, one finalist will be named district Elementary Teacher of the Year, and another will be named the new Secondary Teacher of the Year.

Final winners will be announced at the district’s Service Awards Celebration, which will be held May 4. District Teachers of the Year go on to compete in the annual Region IV Teacher of the Year Competition and the 2016 Houston West Chamber of Commerce competition.

This year’s Elementary Teacher of the Year finalists are:

  • Amanda Badrak of Spring Shadows Elementary, a third-grade English as a Second Language (ESL) language arts and social studies teacher;
  • Teresa Dolan of Edgewood Elementary, a librarian; and 
  • Stephanie Walton of Wilchester Elementary, an art teacher

 This year’s Secondary Teacher of the Year finalists are:

  • Jonathan Cook of Spring Branch Middle School, an eighth-grade science teacher;
  • Michael Ortiz of The Guthrie Center, a filmmaking instructor; 
  • Elaine Sorsby of Stratford High School,  a French and Spanish teacher; and
  • Amanda Tysor of Northbrook High School, a ninth-grade Algebra teacher
Four finalists were named in the Secondary Teacher of the Year category this year due to a tied committee vote.

Recently named as Principals of the Year this year are Vivian Pratts of Edgewood Elementary and Jennifer Parker of Spring Woods High School.

Read more about Principals of the Year >>

Teachers of the Year may be nominated by district students, parents and teachers via online nominations. After nomination, teachers who qualify and meet district priority goals are voted on by campus faculty members.

View the complete listing of campus Teachers of the Year >>

The SBISD Teacher of the Year Committee spends countless hours reading and reviewing applications submitted by each campus-nominated Teacher of the Year candidate. The committee is impressed each and every year by these applications and the unique perspectives of the district’s amazing educators.

After upcoming personal interviews, the committee will vote on the seven finalist candidates. Dr. Scott Muri, Superintendent of Schools, will announce the final top two candidates during the Service Awards Celebration.

The Elementary and Secondary Teacher of the Year will each receive a new $1,000 cash award thanks to the generosity of district partners including First Community Credit Union. They will also receive a $2,000 professional growth stipend, as well as the acclaim and recognition of their peers.

The SBISD Teacher of the Year (TOY) Award recognizes and honors qualifying educators who meet the district’s priority goals. Nominees must:

  • Support the district’s T-2-4 Goal for graduates to pursue military training, technical certification, or two- or four-year degrees, and also demonstrate commitment to SBISD’s beliefs and values
  • Be a dedicated, knowledgeable, effective and skilled teacher
  • Inspire students of all backgrounds and abilities to learn/have a growth mindset
  • Have the respect and admiration of students, parents and colleagues
  • Play an active role in both the school and wider community
  • Demonstrate outstanding leadership and excellence in teaching
  • Model SBISD Core Values
  • Teach at least 4 hours a day if a librarian or counselor
  • Plan to return to their campus or to SBISD next year


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