Kennedy High School Educator Is a Finalist for State Teacher of the Year

August 30, 2016

Michael Williams, a resource teacher at John F. Kennedy High School, has been named a finalist for the 2016–2017 Maryland Teacher of the Year.

The Maryland State Department of Education named Williams and six other educators across the state as finalists for the honor. A winner will be named during a gala reception and dinner at Martin’s West in Baltimore on October 7. The winner will receive cash awards, technology equipment, national travel opportunities, and a new car valued at more than $25,000, donated by the Maryland Automobile Dealers Association.

In May, Williams was named the 2016–2017 Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) Teacher of the Year during the annual Champions for Children celebration.

Williams is the resource teacher for the social studies department at John F. Kennedy High School in Silver Spring. He teaches Advanced Placement (AP) World History, U.S. History, and African American History.

Colleagues and parents say his teaching ability is invigorating and epitomizes excellence. He demonstrates a commitment to equity in education and has developed programs to promote student achievement and leadership.

The greatest example of this is in his role as co-founder of the Montgomery County Minority Scholars Program, a student-driven initiative aimed at reducing the achievement gap by expanding the number of African American and Latino students in honors and AP courses. This program has not only seen an increase in the number of minority students participating in those classes, but it has also expanded to 15 high schools and three middle schools.

In 2014, he was honored with the Humanitarian Award by the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Committee of Montgomery County.

Williams is competing against teachers in six other Maryland districts.  The other finalist are: Katrina Griffin, Anne Arundel County; Athanasia Kyriakakos, Baltimore City; Donna Miller, Calvert County; Anne Highfield, Cecil  County; Michael Williams, Montgomery County; Tamara Forte, Queen Anne’s County; and Christy Briggs, Wicomico County.

Watch an interview with Michael Williams about the Minority Scholars Program.

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