Seven Local Teachers Earn SUNY Dean's Award for Excellence in Teaching
NEW PALTZ -- Seven outstanding teachers from Mid-Hudson public schools and the Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) will be honored with the 2000 Dean's Award for Excellence in Teaching from SUNY New Paltz on September 18.
Nominations of outstanding teachers are made by school principals and district superintendents. The awards are given by the Office of the Dean of Education at SUNY New Paltz based on recommendations from a review committee of education professionals, and student input as well. The winners are selected teachers who demonstrate their commitment to teaching, to excellence, and -- most importantly -- to children and their education.
Each of the seven teachers will receive an honorary appointment as an adjunct clinical professor within the university's School of Education. Recipients will also be recognized by the Mid-Hudson School Study Council at a ceremony later this fall.
The bestowal of Dean's Awards for Excellence in Teaching will take place at a ceremony to be held at the campus's Terrace Restaurant at 4:30 p.m. on Monday, September 18. Members of the media are invited to attend the event and to take photographs.
The Dean's Award for Excellence in Teaching was instituted 17 years ago to honor outstanding area teachers. For more information on these awards, please call the Office of the Dean of the School of Education at New Paltz at 845-257-2800.
The 2000 award recipients:
May Knapp, a library media specialist at New Paltz High School, is being honored for her concern for the improvement of student learning through the integration of technology in the school, library and community environment. Recognizing technology significantly impacting children's learning, she implemented Internet-based home access to library resources and trained both parents and students in its use. The high school library is fully online and houses a state-of-the-art computer lab. Anne Conger, a New Paltz High School 1999 graduate felt that, "By far the most valuable resource in the library and probably the whole school was Mrs. Knapp."
Henrietta Thomas Mountz teaches global history and geography to ninth-graders at John Jay High School. Consistent classroom innovation and professional growth have distinguished her 30-year career in the Wappingers Central School District. Most recently, she and an English teacher colleague developed an inter-disciplinary curriculum. Shelley Thomas, a former student, commented that Mountz "constantly searches to introduce new vistas, thereby creating an exciting synergy between teacher and student. She makes learning an interactive process." She encourages understanding and celebration of diversity, evidenced by her curriculum, such as a human rights assignment that requires students to research current violations of the Declaration of Human Rights.
Kathleen Sahl, a fifth-grade teacher at the East Coldenham Elementary School in the Valley Central School District, works to expand her teaching skills and promote an enhanced vision of science instruction in the elementary grades. She makes conservation relevant to her students by demonstrating the connection between their interaction with the environment and the future impact of that interaction. Because of her efforts, the school has a 40-acre Environment Center on its property that includes woods and a stream, pond, wetlands and field. She has also taken advantage of her school's proximity to the Air National Guard Base at Stewart Airport by participating in their Galaxy program -- a partnership between the Air National Guard and schools which emphasizes the important relationship between science and technology.
Lawrence Scanlon teaches English at Brewster High School in Brewster School District. His success in teaching students of all academic abilities is being acknowledged. He has taught a core program for students at risk, evening high school classes, and at present teaches mostly advance placement courses. A former student stated, "He teaches every level, drawing the same response from everyone, even if it sometimes requires Herculean effort. He treats all student as if they are literary critics or essayists waiting to explode."
Robin Schamberg teaches social studies at Ramapo High School in the East Ramapo School District. She is being recognized as a remarkable teacher not only in the classroom, but also in her involvement in the school and community. The Key Club that she advises has been selected as the best key club in New York state and internationally as well. She also advises a Model Congress program which other schools often visit to observe and emulate.
Diane Trinkaus is a fourth-grade teacher at the Minisink Valley Intermediate School in the Minisink Valley Central School District. She was instrumental in the development of a fourth-grade writing portfolio that has elevated the school-wide achievement in writing and communication skills, developed computer-based programs that are being used by K-5 teachers throughout the district, and encouraged the district's involvement in the Jason Project -- an Internet science enrichment program sponsored by Orange-Ulster BOCES. She has shared ideas and techniques with other teachers through training and publishing a classroom technique handbook.
Joyceanne Wlodarczyk is an itinerant teacher in grades three through eight mainly in the Onteora School District. She works for Ulster County Board of Cooperative Education Services in collaboration with district educators to devise and implement talent development programs and provide professional development to teachers in differentiation and arts integration. Her students are challenged to think in sophisticated ways and from multiple perspectives. Wldoarczyk is distinguished for her ability to attune to the needs of children who look, think, process or act differently from the mainstream, and develops and celebrates their uniqueness.
Located in the heart of a dynamic college town, 90 minutes from metropolitan New York City, the State University of New York at New Paltz is a highly selective college of about 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students.
One of the most well-regarded public colleges in the nation, New Paltz delivers an extraordinary number of majors in Business, Liberal Arts, Sciences, Engineering, Fine and Performing Arts and Education.
New Paltz embraces its culture as a community where talented and independent minded people from around the world create close personal links with real scholars and artists who love to teach.