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Roosevelt Elementary teacher named Norman Teacher of the Year

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Norman Public Schools has announced the Teacher of the Year. Here’s the info:

Norman Public Schools named Roosevelt third grade teacher Brooke Brown as its 2013-2014 Teacher of the Year amid ceremonies last night at its annual Celebration of Excellence banquet.

The event was held at the National Center for Employee Development (Postal Training Center) in Norman and Brown was one of five finalists for the district’s top teaching honor. The other finalists were Calypso Gilstrap, a library media specialist at Norman High; Suzanne Price, a counselor at Truman Primary; Donna Quee, an anatomy/physiology teacher from Norman North; and Amy Young, a Cleveland Elementary fifth grade teacher.

Brown has been employed with NPS since 2008. She previously worked for Yukon Public Schools and has taught 1st, 2nd and third grades in her nine total years of teaching. She is a National Board certified teacher and earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Central Oklahoma.

In the portfolio she submitted for the Teacher of the Year competition, Brown wrote: “Because my level of enthusiasm usually determines the success of a lesson, I make a conscious effort to model a love of learning for my students. A majority of third grade content is brand new, therefore, I facilitate numerous breakthrough moments. It is so rewarding to watch eyes light up as they discover an interesting science concept, write their name in cursive for the first time, or gain fact power with multiplication facts. … Although I’ve taught in two schools with widely varying needs, my philosophy has remianed the same with regard to ‘how I want to be remembered’ by my students. It is my hope that by teaching the essentials of love, life and learning, I am shaping the next generation of young leaders and learners.”

Brown and the other four finalists were chosen from a pool of NPS school site Teachers of the Year, and Brown emerged after a competitive process involving a written portfolio, video and individual interviews with the district’s Staff Development Committee. She will now be NPS’ representative in the state Teacher of the Year program, which is an affiliate of the national Teacher of the Year program.

Both Superintendent Dr. Joe Siano and NPS Director of Professional Development and Student Assessment Beth Spears said the district’s Staff Development Committee had a tough task selecting one Teacher of the Year from the five finalists.

“Brooke will be an excellent representative of the Norman Public Schools and we congratulate her on this much-deserved honor,” Siano said. “I know that she agrees that her four colleagues who were also finalists are also exemplary teachers and we are so fortunate to have them all on our team. As I do every year, I also feel fortunate that I have no part in the selection of finalists or the Teacher of the Year. Selecting just one among a pool of so many great teachers is not an enviable task.”

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Carrie Coppernoll

Carrie Coppernoll is a columnist and reporter. She was named the top personal columnist in Oklahoma in 2009 and 2010 by the Associated Press and Association of Newspaper Editors. She was also named the 2008 Journalist of the Year by the Oklahoma... Read more ›