ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA — October 9, 2007 — Jessica Buckley, a Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) teacher, has been selected to receive this year's "Preserve America History Teacher of the Year" award.
The "Preserve America History Teacher of the Year" program is a project of the Preserve America White House Initiative and is sponsored by The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. The Preserve America program was created to encourage Americans to appreciate and protect the United States' cultural and national heritage.
The "Preserve America History Teacher of the Year" award is presented to outstanding American history teachers from each of the fifty states, the District of Columbia, U.S. Territories, and Department of Defense (DoD) schools. Winners at the state level become finalists for the National History Teacher of the Year award. State winners receive $1,000 in cash and have books and other educational resources donated to their school's library.
This year only elementary school teachers in grades K-6 were allowed to compete.
To be nominated Buckley had to submit a one page statement of her teaching philosophy, a sample lesson plan, an extended project and an 8-10 minute video that demonstrated some of her teaching practices, classroom projects and methods of assessing student achievement.
Buckley, a 5th-grade teacher at Bitz Intermediate School at Camp Lejeune in Swansboro, N.C., was chosen by a DoDEA selection committee as the winner for DoDEA schools.
The committee included the education chief of Domestic Dependent Elementary and Secondary Schools (DDESS), Joel Hansen, Superintendent, Tom Hagar, Assistant Superintendent, Elizabeth Thomas and Instructional Systems Specialist, Felicia Van Heertum.
An alumni of the University of South Carolina (USC) Aiken, Buckley has been a teacher for 17 years. She has taught at Bitz Intermediate School for two years.
Buckley served as the coordinator for a five-day trip to Washington, D.C. for 5th-graders to tour the museums and America's historical sites. She also took her students to Tryon Palace in New Bern, N.C. to get a first hand experience of life in Colonial America.
"I do many different special projects with my students," said Buckley. "From acting out the different events in history, to researching and presenting information about the signers of the Declaration of Independence, to dividing up my class with the Mason-Dixon line and having them find out as much about their group as they can for presentations to other 5th graders."
Buckley will compete with other national finalists for the "National History Teacher of the Year" award; the winner will be announced this fall. The winning teacher and their nominating supervisor will travel to Washington, DC or New York City to attend a national recognition ceremony with all expenses paid by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. DoDEA plans, directs, coordinates, and manages the education programs for Department of Defense (DoD) dependents who would otherwise not have access to a high-quality public education. DoDEA consists of the Department of Defense Dependents Schools (DoDDS) located overseas, and the Department of Defense Domestic Dependent Elementary and Secondary Schools (DDESS) located in the United States and its territories and possessions. DoDEA provides education to eligible DoD military and civilian dependents from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade.
For more information about Preserve America or The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History please contact:
Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History
19 West 44th Street, Suite 500
New York, New York 10036
For interviews with DoDEA's selectee contact:
For questions about DoDEA's participation in the selection process for the History Teacher of the Year award contact:
Instructional Systems Specialist