Gov. Deval Patrick and education officials to honor MA Teachers - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Gov. Deval Patrick and education officials to honor MA Teacher of the Year

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Governor Deval Patrick and Secretary of Education Matthew Malone joined the state and local education officials, Friday to recognize the Massachusetts Teacher of the Year and other recipients of the Commonwealth's top honors for educators.

During the ceremony held at the Museum of Science, officials presented awards to Anne Marie Bettencourt, a Springfield Central High School 9th grade English Language Arts teacher who was selected as the 2014 Teacher of the Year, as well as finalists and semifinalists of the award.

Jeanne M. Lenza, a 5th grade history teacher at the Thomas R. Plympton School in Waltham, was also named the 2013 Massachusetts History Teacher of the Year.

The 2013 Massachusetts History Teacher of the Year, 2012 Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching finalists; and the 2012 Milken Family Foundation National Educator were also recognized.

"I thank these honorees for their deep commitment to preparing our students for success as responsible, productive citizens and as leaders within their communities," said Patrick. "Their dedication to teaching is an inspiration to us all.  They understand the stake we have in the next generation and are the reason our students lead the nation."

"Teachers are doing the most important work in America today," said Malone. "It is opportunities such as this where we honor the best but also recognize that they represent thousands more who are the unsung heroes of our cities and towns."

The Massachusetts Teacher of the Year Program, which is administered by the Patrick Administration, recognizes each school year excellence in teaching across the Commonwealth by selecting a teacher who exemplifies the dedication, commitment and positive contributions of educators statewide.

The Massachusetts Teacher of the Year is automatically the state's candidate for National Teacher of the Year. While remaining in the classroom, Bettencourt will serve as ambassador to the teaching profession over the next year by making speeches and conducting workshops throughout the state.

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