Four Tucson-area teachers win Leaders in Education award

Four local teachers have been selected for the 2022 Raytheon Leaders in Education Award, a recognition given by Raytheon Missiles & Defense and Tucson Values ​​Teachers.

The Raytheon Leaders in Education Award recognizes Pima County teachers in PreK-12 who are achieving outstanding classroom performance, demonstrating leadership in their schools and communities, and supporting their peers.

The four winners are Jessica Caramella, a preschool teacher at Emily Meschter Early Learning Center; Jaime Camero, a sixth-grade science teacher at Walter Douglas Elementary School; Mollie Grove, a seventh- and eighth-grade science teacher at Alice Vail Middle School; and Ariana Brown, a dance teacher at Flowing Wells High School.

According to a news release from Tucson Values ​​Teachers, Caramella has taught early childhood education for nine years and was named Teacher of the Year at her school during the 2017-18 school year. She has also guided her preschoolers in creating winning projects at SARSEF’s science and engineering fairs.

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Camero has taught for nearly 20 years, the past nine at Walter Douglas Elementary. Her colleagues selected her as the 2022 Teacher of the Year, and she was recognized as the SARSEF Champion Teacher of the Year earlier this year.

Grove, who has taught at Alice Vail for 15 years, was named the school’s Teacher of the Year in 2020. She recently launched a new STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) elective on campus, in which students can earn high school credit .

Brown, who’s in her eighth year of teaching at FWHS, teaches grades 9-12 in all levels and types of dance. She’s the director of the school’s Momentum Dance Company and facilitates two other dance teams, one for children ages 3-14 and the other for adults.

The four teachers were selected from a pool of 12 finalists. The winners will each receive $2,500 in gifts and an additional $2,500 in gifts for their respective schools. They will be honored at Tucson Values ​​Teachers’ Stand Up 4 Teachers ceremony on Nov. 9.

Free snacks for JTED

Pima JTED received a federal grant renewal from the Child and Adult Care Food Program to provide free, healthy snacks to students who attend evening and Saturday programs at three of the district’s campuses.

The campuses that will continue to benefit from the grant include JTED @ Amphi Land Lab, JTED @ Camino Seco and JTED @ Master Pieces.

“The majority of our students attend their public school during the day and come to their JTED program immediately after school, so the healthy snacks we provide are vital to help those students function better in school and carry them through a long day,” said Terri Howard, the district’s grants and data specialist.

According to a Pima JTED news release, the district originally received the grant in 2013 and has since been able to provide free snacks to about 800 students per day.

Have any questions or news tips about K-12 education in Southern Arizona? Contact reporter Genesis Lara at [email protected]


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