John Poole MS Educator Named 2014-2015 MCPS Teacher of the Year

April 29, 2014
Outstanding staff, partners honored at Champions for Children 

An eighth-grade teacher at John Poole Middle School is the 2014-2015 Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) Teacher of the Year and will now compete for Maryland Teacher of the Year.

Jane Lindsay was named the Teacher of the Year on Tuesday (April 29, 2014) at the 12th annual Champions for Children Awards Celebration at the BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown.

“Congratulations to Jane Lindsay on being named the MCPS Teacher of the Year and for the work she is doing to serve the students and staff of John Poole Middle School,” said Phil Kauffman, president of the Montgomery County Board of Education. “She is a committed educator who works tirelessly to ensure that all students are served to the highest levels.”

Mrs. Lindsay, who was one of three finalists for Teacher of the Year, is a grade 8 English and reading teacher at Poole, and also serves as the department head.

“Jane Lindsay represents the high-quality employees we have in MCPS, who care deeply about their students and work hard to make sure our children receive a world-class education that prepares them for the future,” said Superintendent of Schools Joshua P. Starr. “Mrs. Lindsay is a leader among her peers and is committed to helping her students and colleagues grow and improve.”

The Champions for Children celebration is hosted by the Montgomery County Business Roundtable for Education (MCBRE) and is made possible through generous donations from sponsors. MCBRE is a nonprofit organization, comprised of senior business leaders who share their expertise with MCPS leadership and sponsor programs that connect what students are learning in the classroom to the real world.

“MCBRE is proud to recognize the outstanding staff and partners of Montgomery County Public Schools,” said Tiffany Godbout Williams, executive director of MCBRE. “Our mission is to support the students, staff, and leaders of MCPS and an important part of that mission is celebrating excellence and the commitment of volunteers and community partners.”

Mrs. Lindsay has worked for MCPS since 1988 and has taught at John Poole Middle School for the past five years. She also has taught at Rocky Hill Middle School and Strawberry Knoll Elementary School.  Those who nominated Mrs. Lindsay for consideration highlighted her instructional expertise, which includes finding creative ways to engage students in their lessons and help them gain important literacy skills.

“Her students’ success is due to her instructional skill, her ability to engage student interest and transform it into academic commitment, and her tireless devotion to fulfilling the high expectations that are the hallmark of everything she does,” wrote Charlotte Boucher, principal of Poole Middle, and Jennifer Kasten, president of the Poole PTSA in their nomination letter.

“Jane is constantly scouring all types of literature, whether it’s music, art, newspaper, or film, to find connections to her curriculum,” wrote her colleague Nicole Kirby. “She makes the learning very relevant to the eighth graders she teaches.”

Her colleagues also noted Mrs. Lindsay’s commitment to mentoring and collaborating with her colleagues and her role in preparing John Poole Middle School to implement the Common Core State Standards in English.

Mrs. Lindsay was chosen from among three finalists, all of whom were winners of the Marian Greenblatt Education Fund Veteran Teacher Award. The other finalists were Kathryn Hageman, a grade 5 teacher at Diamond Elementary School and Aaron Shin, a grade 8 teacher at Parkland Middle School.

The finalists for MCPS Teacher of the Year receive $1,000 from the Marian Greenblatt Education Fund. They will also receive an additional $1,000 furnished by Kaiser Permanente and Choice Hotels, as well as a Microsoft Surface tablet. As MCPS Teacher of the Year, Mrs. Lindsay receives the use of a car for one year from Fitzgerald Auto Malls. 

Several other employees and community members received awards at the Champions for Children event on Thursday evening, including:

Deborah Yun, grade 1 teacher, Westover Elementary School, Marian Greenblatt Rising Star Teacher of the Year 
- Christine Handy-Collins, principal, Gaithersburg High School, Dr. Edward Shirley Award for Excellence in Educational Administration and Supervision
Deborah Prochnow, college/career information coordinator, Watkins Mill High School, Supporting Services Employee of the Year
Washington Gas, Business Champion for Children 
- Chris McDermott, Chair of the Montgomery County Reflections program, Volunteer Champion for Children
Robert W. Dodd, principal, Argyle Middle School, The Washington Post Distinguished Educational Leader Award
Mary Hawkins-Jones, grade 5 teacher, Westover Elementary School, The Washington Post Agnes Meyer Outstanding Teacher Award.

The Champions for Children celebration is made possible by generous donations from more than 40 sponsors. All of the winners receive monetary awards and other prizes donated by sponsors. Among the major sponsors are: 

Kaiser Permanente, which sponsors the Marian Greenblatt Veteran Teacher Award
Adventist Healthcare, which sponsors the Volunteer Champion for Children Award
Hess Construction and Engineering, which sponsors the Supporting Services Employee of the Year Award
Lockheed Martin, which sponsors the Marian Greenblatt Rising Teacher of the Year Award
KMPG LLP, which sponsors the Edward Shirley Award for Excellence in Educational Administration and Supervision
The Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce, which sponsors the Business Champion for Children Award

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