Written by Beth O'Donnell, Asst. Superintendent for Instruction Saturday, 28 April 2012 10:43
Riversink Elementary teacher Megan Crombie was surprised by a visit from Florida’s Commissioner of Education Gerard Robinson who announced that she is one of five finalists for the Macy’s/Florida Department of Education 2013 Teacher of the Year Award.
Noted Commissioner Robinson, “A teacher is one of the most influential factors in a student’s academic accomplishments. Each Teacher of the Year finalist reflects the character, commitment and qualities that help students realize their potential and ensure they have every chance for success.”
This year’s five finalists were chosen from more than 180,000 public school teachers throughout the state by a Department of Education-appointed selection committee representing teachers, principals, parents and the business community. Each finalist is selected on the basis of outstanding ability to teach and communicate knowledge of the subject taught, professional development, philosophy of teaching, and outstanding school and community service. The winner must also show a superior capacity to inspire a love of learning in students of all backgrounds and abilities.
“This isn’t an individual award in my opinion,” stated Crombie. “When one of us is honored, it is because of the rich collaboration from teachers in my school and in Wakulla County. This is an amazing school system, and I’m proud to be a part of it.”
Crombie holds a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education, a masters degree in Gifted Education, has certification in Middle Grades Integrated Curriculum, is endorsed in English Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and is a National Board certified teacher. This is her seventh year of teaching.
She also teaches three of the five college courses needed for the Gifted Endorsement to a cadre of elementary and middle school teachers after school hours. In addition, she has been the Riversink Yearbook sponsor since 2008 and has taken a leadership role in the Wakulla District Writing Committee.
She has participated in extensive professional development in the areas of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) through summers at the National High Magnetic Laboratory Research Experience for Teachers and at the Phil Mickelson ExxonMobil Teachers Academy for Math and Science. In addition, she is an outreach sponsor for the FAMU/FSU College of Engineering when they have competitions through the American Society of Civil Engineers.
Stated Superintendent David Miller, “Mrs. Crombie’s breadth of knowledge about STEM areas and her ability to inspire her fourth/fifth grade combination class of students to experiment, hypothesize, and understand how STEM areas affect everything is phenomenal. Her focus is on student achievement and her love for her students is at the core of that desire to see them succeed.”
Riversink Principal Jackie High noted, “While Mrs. Crombie is academically very strong, her true strength lies in the relationships she builds with her students, their families, and her peers in the school. She makes learning exciting and fun.”
Upon receiving the good news, Crombie was presented with a $5,000 check made possible by the Macy’s Foundation and a $500 Macy’s gift card. A $1,000 check from the Macy’s Foundation was also presented to Principal Jackie High for use at Riversink Elementary.
Crombie and the other four finalists will now go on to another set of interviews with representatives from the Florida Department of Education and with Macy’s. The winner of the 2013 Macy’s/Florida Department of Education Teacher of the Year award will be announced during a ceremony in Orlando on July 12, 2012.
In addition to a $10,000 award funded by the Macy’s Foundation, the Teacher of the Year will receive awards from Macy’s including an all-expense paid trip for four to New York City to attend the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The winner will also serve for one year as the Christa McAuliffe Ambassador for education, touring the state to spread the word about educational opportunities and challenges in the Sunshine State. To date, Macy’s and the Macy’s Foundation have contributed over $2 million to teachers throughout the state.
Crombie is married to Dave Crombie and is the daughter of Tim and Beth O’Donnell, both Wakulla County educators.
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