Knightsen Elementary School District 2018-19 Teacher of the Year Receives Special Visit

Knightsen Elementary School District 2018-19 Teacher of the Year Receives Special Visit
Posted on 06/15/2018
Contra Costa County Superintendent of Schools Karen Sakata and Knightsen Elementary School District’s Teacher of the Year Melissa Wunschel.

KNIGHTSEN, Calif., June 14, 2018 – Recently, Contra Costa County Superintendent of Schools Karen Sakata visited teacher Melissa Wunschel’s classroom, at Knightsen Elementary School, in Knightsen. Wunschel has been teaching mathematics and science to grades 5-8 during her 12 years at Knightsen. Earlier this year, she was honored by being named Knightsen Elementary School District’s Teacher of the Year (TOY).

“Melissa is an energetic educator who works diligently to ensure that her students learn,” said retired Knightsen Elementary School District Superintendent Theresa Estrada. “Both of my youngest children were in her science classes, so I know firsthand how much her students respect her and how excited the students become about science at Knightsen. She is a highly respected instructional leader who wants to ensure that she does everything possible to assist her colleagues in becoming better educators, by helping them to learn more about science and technology.”

Estrada continues, “It has been my pleasure to watch her grow over the years, from a first-year teacher to an instructional expert who provides leadership to all teachers in the district.”

On the evening of September 27, 2018, the 22 Contra Costa County TOYs, class of 2018-19, including Melissa Wunschel, will be introduced and honored at the annual Teacher of the Year Gala, held at the Concord Hilton. The 22 TOYs will be accompanied by their families, friends, and co-workers. The expected crowd of close to 500 will also include numerous other supporters of the program. For more information about this year’s CCCOE TOY Program, please review this earlier-sent news release.

Throughout the school year, Superintendent Sakata makes it a point to visit each incoming TOY in their classrooms, prior to the Dinner Gala. This is a great way for her to meet the teachers and their students, as well as take in the day’s lesson plan. When individually introducing the TOYs at the Dinner Gala, a short video presentation (recorded at each TOY classroom visit) will feature a quote from students about their revered teacher.

Currently, there are approximately 8,400 teachers educating more than 177,000 students in Contra Costa County’s public schools. To recognize their efforts and bring much-deserved honor to the teaching profession, the participating school districts in the county named their TOY representatives in mid March. The incoming 22 TOYs represent 17 Contra Costa County school districts, the Contra Costa Community College District, and the Contra Costa County Office of Education (CCCOE). Most of these representatives, those who teach grades TK-12, are eligible to compete in the Contra Costa County TOY competition. The two top teachers in the county TOY program will represent Contra Costa County in the California State TOY Program this coming fall.


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