CCC TOY Tickets on Sale

Tickets Now on Sale for the 50th Annual Contra Costa County Teacher of the Year Celebration at Lesher Center
Posted on 08/30/2022
PLEASANT HILL, Ca. -- Tickets for the 50th-Annual Contra Costa County Teacher of the Year celebration on Thursday, September 22 are now on sale on the Lesher Center website. Nineteen teachers from across the county will be honored at the first in-person celebration since 2019, and for the first time ever at the Lesher Center in Walnut Creek. At the end of the program, two Contra Costa County Teachers of the Year winners will be announced.

The celebration starts at 6 p.m. Tickets cost $25 each with prices going up to $35 after Labor Day. Proceeds from ticket sales help provide all 19 teachers classroom grants valued between $1,000-$2,500. Donations are also being accepted to cover the cost of the teachers’ tickets or to the county teacher of the year program by visiting the Contra Costa County Office of Education website.

The teachers being recognized at the celebration were named their school district’s teacher of the year and four were named county finalists, including Moraga School District Teacher of the Year Serina Culleton (Donald L. Rheem Elementary School), Mt. Diablo Unified School District Teacher of the Year Natasha Paul (Mt. Diablo High School), San Ramon Valley Unified School District Teacher of the Year Chavonta Edington (Diablo Vista Middle School) and Walnut Creek School District Teacher of the Year Paula L. Rathert (Murwood Elementary School).

In addition to celebrating the teachers, the evening will also highlight the best of what public education in the county has to offer with student performances from Northgate High School (Mt. Diablo Unified School District), Antioch High School (Antioch Unified School District), Monte Vista High School (San Ramon Valley Unified School District), El Cerrito High School (West Contra Costa Unified School District), and Pittsburg High School (Pittsburg Unified School District).

Coordinated by the CCCOE, judging in the county competition combines a three-stage selection process with a point and percentage system to determine the final candidates. The first stage is a careful screening process of all applications submitted the teachers of the year of each school district of which four finalists are selected. The four finalists are then interviewed separately and each will present a three- to five-minute speech in person to a panel of judges. Topics covered in all three stages are teaching philosophies, techniques and personal background. The finalists are also judged on their speech and presentation skills. The judging panels represent the county’s education professionals, business and public-sector partners.

2022-2023 Contra Costa County Teacher of the Year Nominees:
• Sarah Frank, Acalanes Union High School District, Miramonte High School
• Kathleen Brown, Brentwood Union School District, Edna Hill Middle School
• Bernadette Geer, Byron Union School District, Timber Point Elementary School
• Christina Carter, Contra Costa County Office of Education, Contra Costa Adult School
• Maya Nelson, John Swett Unified School District, John Swett High School
• Mackenzie Tovani, Knightsen Elementary School District, Knightsen Elementary School
• Claudia Windfuhr, Lafayette School District, Stanley Middle School
• Crystal Shaw, Liberty Union High School District, Heritage High School
• Jamie Nunes, Martinez Unified School District, Las Juntas Elementary School
Serina Culleton, Moraga School District, Donald L. Rheem Elementary School
• Katalina Gallo, Mt. Diablo Unified School District, Mt. Diablo High School
Natasha Paul, Mt. Diablo Unified School District, Mt. Diablo High School
• Makaela Ann Huntsinger, Pittsburg Unified School District, Pittsburg Senior High School
• Georgianni Cappelletti, San Ramon Valley Unified School District, Tassajara Hills Elementary
Chavonta Edington, San Ramon Valley Unified School District, Diablo Vista Middle School
• Paula L. Rathert, Walnut Creek School District, Murwood Elementary School

• Luis F. Chacon, West Contra Costa Unified School District, Richmond High School
• Nashon Williams, West Contra Costa Unified School District, Lovonya DeJean Middle School
• Ellen Coatney, Contra Costa County Community College District, Contra Costa College

Note regarding eligible participants:
• 14 of the 18 Contra Costa County school districts represented, and the CCCOE are participating in this year’s TOY program.
• Each year, one instructor from Contra Costa Community College District is submitted to the TOY program for their outstanding body of work with their designated college. The colleges rotate each year between Diablo Valley, Los Medanos, and Contra Costa. These instructors do not compete in the State Teacher of the Year competition but will be recognized at the Contra Costa County Teacher or the Year Celebration.
• Due to the larger number of students and teachers in their districts, Mt. Diablo USD, San Ramon Valley USD and West Contra Costa USD are allowed to submit two TOY candidates.

For more information on the Contra Costa County Teacher of the Year program or to donate, visit cocoschools.org/toy. Follow the CCCOE on social media at @cocoschools.
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