October 15, 2004
New Mexico Public Education Department
300 Don Gaspar
Santa Fe, NM 87501-2786

Ruth Williams
Legislative Liaison/PIO
(505) 827-7803 or 988-0582 pager

2005 New Mexico 'Teacher of the Year' to be Named

(Santa Fe, NM)--Five teachers, all district teachers of the year, will vie for the title of 2005 New Mexico "Teacher of the Year" at an awards ceremony to be held on Wednesday, October 20, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., at the Petroleum Club, located at 500 Marquette, NW, in Albuquerque. Also to be named will be two runners up.

“The ‘Teacher of the Year’ program provides a unique opportunity to salute some of our most outstanding teachers. Although only one teacher will emerge as the ‘Teacher of the Year,’ all of those nominated are truly exceptional,” said Secretary of Education Dr. Veronica C. García. “This special evening is about the value, impact and importance of quality teachers.”

The five finalists come from Clovis, Los Alamos, Raton, Gadsden and Gallup. They are among 13 district teachers of the year named in New Mexico in 2004. Presenting the New Mexico “Teacher of the Year” honor will be James Ball, assistant secretary for educator quality at the Public Education Department.

The New Mexico “Teacher of the Year” recognition is part of the National “Teacher of the Year” Program and is co-sponsored by the Council of Chief State School Officers, PNM and Scholastic, Inc.

The New Mexico “Teacher of the Year” receives cash awards, travels to Dallas in January 2005 to represent New Mexico at the National “Teacher of the Year” conference and speaks statewide. He or she will be entered in the National “Teacher of the Year” competition. The National “Teacher of the Year” will be announced and honored in Washington, D.C., in April 2005.