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Nominate Your Favorite Brooklyn Teacher to Win $25K

The FLAG Award for Teaching Excellence is open for nominations and includes a range of prizes for local teachers
Brooklyn Grand Prize Winner Andrew Chiappetta and Finalist Malika I. Johnson-Willis, Brooklyn New School PS146
Brooklyn 2020 Grand Prize Winner Andrew Chiappetta (R) and Finalist Malika I. Johnson-Willis, Brooklyn New School P.S. 146. Photo: Supplied.

Brooklyn, if you know a teacher that has been going the extra mile -- nominate them for the chance to win $25,000.

The FLAG Award for Teaching Excellence has opened for nominations for its third annual awards, which highlight and reward extraordinary K-12 New York City public school teachers in each borough who inspire learning through creativity, passion and commitment.

Teachers can be nominated by students, parents of students, school personnel and community members to be in to win a $25,000 grand prize and $10,000 for their schools.

Last year’s Brooklyn Grand Prize Winner was Andrew Chiappetta, a second grade special education teacher from PS 146, Brooklyn New School.

Chiappetta was selected in part for building an engaging website that functioned as a virtual classroom for his special needs students. Over the summer, he used his self-taught coding skills to improve it so that in the fall it included two-way direct communication with the students, individualized scheduling, video lessons, assignments and examples of classmates' work.

Glenn Fuhrman, founder of The FLAG Award for Teaching Excellence, said educators were the pillars of the community and with the awards, the community had the chance “to honor the best among all the wonderful teachers who support and enrich the lives of New York City’s 1.1 million school children.”

“As we enter a new phase of learning during a pandemic, we know that teachers will rise to the occasion and they deserve even more recognition for their efforts,” Co-founder Amanda Fuhrman added.

In the awards, one grand prize winner from each borough will receive a $25,000 cash prize, and each finalist will receive a $10,000 prize. Each grand prize winner’s school will receive $10,000, and each finalist’s school will receive $2,000 for an arts-based initiative that the recipients will help create at their school. The school award provides additional resources for arts education, an area that is often underfunded in public schools. 

Current full-time teachers in New York City public schools, grades K-12, with at least five years of classroom experience are eligible for the awards program.

Candidates will be judged by a jury that includes State Education Commissioner Dr. Betty A. Rosa based on how well they embody the award’s CREATE criteria:

  • Challenges and inspires students of all abilities, utilizing innovative teaching techniques and approaches to curricula and activities.
  • Reaches out beyond the classroom, making a positive impact on the school and the community.
  • Embraces their role as an educator with tirelessness, devotion, and dedication.  
  • Acknowledges the full spectrum of potential in each and every student.
  • Teaches through example, as a leader and role model both inside the classroom and out.
  • Engages in opportunities for self-improvement and continues to learn, grow, and develop as a teacher.

Nominations are open now and will close on December 1, 2021. Semi-finalists will be notified in February. Winners will be announced in June.