A Farmingville music teacher, a Scotts Ridge science teacher, and a Ridgebury gym teacher — those were some of the educators named “Teacher of the Year” at each of the district’s nine schools Thursday, May 10.

Jennifer DeJulio, a social studies teacher at Ridgefield High School, was given top honors as the district-wide Teacher of the Year.

The announcement coincided with teacher appreciation week, May 7-13.

“National Teacher Appreciation Week provides our community an opportunity to thank all of our teachers for the work they do to promote learning for every student, every day,” said Acting Superintendent Dr. Robert Miller. “On behalf of the district, I congratulate Ms. DeJulio and all our building Teacher of Year winners and thank them for their outstanding contribution to our school community.”

Award winners

For each of the eight schools, the teachers of the year are:

  • Barlow Mountain Elementary: Regina Zafrin, special education 
  • Branchville Elementary: Dianne Schnee, kindergarten 
  • Farmingville Elementary: Nora Marrinan, music 
  • Ridgebury Elementary: Richard Cesareo, physical education 
  • Scotland Elementary: Jodie Luongo, math specialist
  • Veterans Park Elementary: Tricia Winkler, literacy specialist
  • East Ridge Middle School: Maureen Tyra, social studies
  • Scotts Ridge Middle School: Charlsie Vanderrest, science 

Teachers are nominated for the award by their colleagues. A committee at each school selects that school’s individual teacher of the year, and then a district-wide committee selects the winner for the district from that list.

In a press release, the district said the award was meant to recognize and honor “teacher excellence,” not the “best” teacher.

“The goal is to identify one teacher to serve as a visible and vocal representative of best practices within the profession,” the release said.

Read more about DeJulio in next Thursday's Ridgefield Press.