ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

ASCD Recognizes Outstanding Young Educators

2012 OYEA Winners Joshua Garcia (l) and Ryan Twentey (r)

ASCD salutes a new generation's passion for education excellence through this year's selection of two Outstanding Young Educator Award winners: Joshua Garcia, deputy superintendent of Tacoma Public Schools (Wash.), and Parkville High School (Parkville, Md.) teacher Ryan Twentey. Twentey teaches art, photography, and interactive media production and also serves as the school's technology liaison.

This award celebrates teachers and administrators who demonstrate outstanding leadership, as well as a passion for and commitment to educating the whole child; improving student engagement, achievement, and learning; and contributing to the education profession.

Joshua Garcia

Garcia strongly believes in creating success for every learner. "Every student can graduate prepared for higher education," Garcia says. "In order to provide each child with a whole child education, school and community leaders must relentlessly dissolve barriers and build cohesive systems that foster excellence. Only then will we fulfill our pledge to provide every child the opportunity to pursue a successful life."

Throughout his career, Garcia has worked mainly in urban settings, serving the most vulnerable learners. Garcia has led efforts to develop board policy that automatically enrolls students into rigorous AP, IB, and CIE programs. Also, Garcia has developed a preK–12 standards-based instruction, grading, reporting, and assessment system; a sustainable and comprehensive K–12 instructional coaching model; a districtwide differentiated professional development model; and an accountability model that measures how healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged students are in school.

Ryan Twentey

Twentey is known as a dedicated teacher who fosters his students' artistic interests to develop the skills they need to be successful in school, in the community, and in preparation for college. His photography and multimedia students have earned a 100 percent pass rate on the AP exam.

Twentey also teaches interactive media production. He produces tutorials to help each student work at his own pace to reach understanding. He encourages his students to persevere, collaborate, and offer respectful critiques to help one another improve.

"Education is not only a means of defining skill sets but also delivering to students an encompassing wealth of knowledge and dedication to understand, so that together, we form communities of lifelong learners," says Twentey. "My classroom is an environment of mutual respect, motivation, and positive risk-taking, blending cutting-edge technology with traditional techniques based in Universal Design for Learning. This atmosphere allows students to uniquely interact with content, engaging desire to learn, while encouraging them to be self-sufficient learners, no matter the situations or challenges faced."

ASCD would like to congratulate Joshua Garcia and Ryan Twentey on their outstanding achievements.

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