Department of Defense Education Activity

DoDEA Names Angela Wilson as 2012 Teacher of the Year

For Immediate Release — November 10, 2011 | HQ

ARLINGTON, VA — November 10, 2011 — The Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) is proud to announce the selection of Angela Wilson as the 2012 DoDEA Teacher of the Year.

Wilson, an English and Language Arts teacher at Vicenza Middle School in Italy, will represent DoDEA at the national Teacher of the Year celebration to be held in Washington, D.C. next spring. She was one of 14 district nominees considered by a panel of DoDEA leaders for the Teacher of the Year title.

The DoDEA Teacher of the Year Program recognizes and promotes excellence in education. Teachers may be nominated by a peer, administrator, parent, student, or community member. Nominees complete an application packet and submit it to a selection panel at a DoDEA District Office where one applicant is chosen as the District Teacher of the Year. A second panel assembled at DoDEA Headquarters then selects the DoDEA Teacher of the Year from the candidates submitted from each district. The DoDEA Teacher of the Year competes for the title of National Teacher of the Year.

With more than 11 years of teaching experience, Wilson has taught in public schools in Utah and Illinois and in DoDEA schools in Korea, Turkey, and Italy. She is a 1997 Magna Cum Laude graduate of Western Illinois University where she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Education. She also holds a Master's Degree in Education from Southern Utah University.

Wilson's philosophy and practice of teaching focuses on "bringing learning alive." According to Wilson, her role in the classroom is to meet students at their levels, discover their interests and ignite their passion for learning through dynamic, creative, daily lessons.

"I believe every lesson can and should be exciting, engaging, and meaningful," said Wilson. "By using formative assessment to guide my instruction and coupling best practices with creativity and differentiation, students are engaged in the learning process in challenging and appealing ways.

"I try to appeal to all types of 21st Century learners in my room and do all I can to connect students to the content by incorporating their names, the words they use, and the songs and shows they like into our language arts classes," Wilson continued. "My students know that I value what they think and when I spark excitement in them and see them become seekers, investigators, and creators of learning, I feel like I've been successful."

Marilee Fitzgerald, Acting DoDEA Director, praised Wilson for her ability to connect her educational beliefs to her students and bring life, creativity, and enthusiasm to their learning experiences.

"Angela is a wonderful representative of what is best in our teachers, and we are honored by her selection," said Fitzgerald. "Three principles and practices underpin Angela's approach to teaching and learning. First, she connects with students, doing whatever it takes to help them grasp ideas and concepts. Then, she connects with her work to make learning relevant for students. Finally, she connects to her community by involving community members in school activities."

The Teacher of the Year Program encourages teachers to take an active part in educational leadership. As outstanding educators, those selected perform a variety of roles. They promote the teaching profession and work with school officials to enhance the quality of teaching and the education of DoDEA students.

The National Teacher of the Year Program is the oldest and most prestigious awards program for teachers in the country. It is a project of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), is sponsored by the ING Foundation and Target, in partnership with the University of Phoenix and People to People Ambassador Programs.

The CCSSO is a non partisan, nationwide, nonprofit organization of public officials who head departments of elementary and secondary education in the states, the District of Columbia, the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA), and five U. S. extra-state jurisdictions. CCSSO provides leadership, advocacy, and technical assistance on major educational issues. The Council seeks member consensus on major educational issues and expresses their views to civic and professional organizations, federal agencies, congress, and the public.

DoDEA plans, directs, coordinates, and manages pre-kindergarten - 12th grade education programs for Department of Defense (DoD) dependents who would otherwise not have access to a high-quality public education. DoDEA schools are located in Europe, the Pacific, the United States, Guam, Cuba, and Puerto Rico. DoDEA also provides support and resources to Local Education Activities throughout the U.S. that serve children of military families.