The Community Foundation and the R.E.B. Foundation recognized five Chesterfield County Public Schools teachers with 2017 R.E.B. Awards for Teaching Excellence during a regional ceremony Monday night. Seven other Chesterfield County teachers were recognized as finalists for the award.
Together, these 12 Chesterfield County teachers will receive approximately $38,650 in professional development grants. The educators were part of more than 30 outstanding public school teachers from across the region selected as honorees.
“Professional development is an important component to having high-quality teachers in our classrooms, and it’s great to see these outstanding teachers rewarded with opportunities that are innovative and engaging,” School Board Chair Dr. Javaid Siddiqi said. “These teachers are among the best in their field and demonstrate a passion for teaching that will only be enhanced by the experiences gained from these grants.”
The awards program, which is a partnership between The Community Foundation Serving Richmond and Central Virginia and the R.E.B. Foundation, recognizes excellence in public education by awarding cash grants to outstanding public school teachers from the city of Richmond, the counties of Chesterfield, Henrico and Hanover, and the Department of Correctional Education. Since its inception in 1988, the program has awarded $3.5 million to 774 public school instructors as recognition for their outstanding classroom performance. In total, 16 R.E.B. award winners and 14 finalists will receive cash grants totaling $180,800.
“Our 12 teachers were selected from 112 regional nominations submitted by students, parents and colleagues, and represented the largest number of winners from any school division in the region,” Superintendent Dr. James Lane said. “We know that these grants will continue to foster growth within our amazing teachers and enrich the learning experience for our students.”
These Chesterfield County teachers were 2017 R.E.B. Awards for Teaching Excellence Award winners:
Helena Agnew, Cosby High, $12,000 to Study Native American crafts, including pottery, basketry and weaving at the Taos Art School in New Mexico; Heather Andre, Cosby High , $12,000 to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for the art of a cappella through travel to Italy and England to visit the buildings in which this music originated; Michaela Dismann, Chesterfield Career and Technical Center @ Courthouse, $12,000 to interview former students and experts at colleges, universities and places of rural employment and gain hands-on experience with stockmanship at a Wyoming Working Ranch; Jennifer Gradwell, Chesterfield Juvenile Detention Home School, $11,400 to travel to Africa to explore the connections between poverty, education and literacy and visit villages in Uganda and Niger, which have some of the lowest literacy rates in the world; Minh Jurgens, Bailey Bridge Middle, $10,000 to travel to her home country of Vietnam to visit war sites to deepen her understanding of a chapter in American history that impacted millions of lives, including her own.
Additionally, seven Chesterfield County Public Schools teachers were recognized as finalists and received a $750 unrestricted cash grant in recognition of their achievements in the classroom: Jaclyn Clark, Cosby High; Jill Gusewelle, Providence Elementary; Kathryn Pawlyk, Spring Run
Elementary; Alice Ann Potts, Providence Middle; Jennifer Ryan, Monacan High; Rudolph Steinruck, Chesterfield Career and Technical Center @ Courthouse; and Paige Tucker, Elizabeth Davis Middle.