Pioneer Valley Excellence in Teaching Awards

The Pioneer Valley Excellence in Teaching Awards program annually honors Western Massachusetts educators and seeks to motivate teachers at all stages of their careers to aspire to excellence.



“As a ‘new teacher’ recipient, I feel the award affirms that my teaching strategies are effective and that I am creating an impact on my students.”A 2-YEAR TEACHER IN WILBRAHAM

The Pioneer Valley Excellence in Teaching Awards (a program of the Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation) annually honor outstanding Western Massachusetts educators in Franklin, Hampshire, and Hampden counties and seeks to motivate teachers at all stages of their careers to aspire to excellence. Since its 2003 launch, this partnership of the Irene E. & George A. Davis Foundation, Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), and the Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation has brought recognition to more than a thousand distinguished educators.

Award recipients receive gifts in recognition for their outstanding work, including
 
  • 2 tickets to a private gala reception
  • 2 tickets to the Awards Banquet
  • Prize check for $500
  • Prize check for additional $250 for teachers receiving the Classroom Innovator Award
  • Award plaque
  • Course tuition at a participating college or university
  • One year membership to WGBY
  • Membership for a limited time at a participating YMCA and the Springfield Jewish Community Center
  • Other gifts
Learn more about our Awards Banquet here.

“In terms of impact, my colleagues want to collaborate more on ideas and teaching resources.”A 4TH GRADE TEACHER FROM AMHERST


Award Selection Process
Superintendents in 45 school districts are responsible to act as, or appoint, a district representative to oversee a process for carefully selecting outstanding teacher award recipients based on student population. Districts with at least 750 students attending public school award teachers annually, while district with fewer than 750 students attending public school award teachers biannually. Districts with over a thousand students may make an additional annual award to a deserving newer teacher with between one to three years’ experience.

In February each year, districts announce nominated teachers. In March, teachers submit an informational “Nominated Teacher Form.” Nominated teachers have the option to submit a classroom project idea that promotes an educational goal and includes all students.
 



Learn about our program partners and supporters here.

“Teachers are so important to the development of our children. Anything we can do to support them, show our deep gratitude and nurture them is incredibly valuable. ”HAROLD GRINSPOON


Classroom Innovator Prize
Excellence in Teaching Awards winners are invited to apply for an additional $250 Classroom Innovator Prize to experiment with project-based learning in their classrooms.
 
Award winner and art teacher Andy Bell, West Springfield High School, explains: “My innovator project was aided by training I received an ‘Art and Social Change’ workshop at Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams. My students researched and surveyed our community, and created an “installation” artwork about RESPECT. It was displayed at our arts festival, engaging the larger community.”
 
Project-based learning initiatives attracted the interest of Excellence in Teaching Awards program partner Harold Grinspoon, who engaged Boston filmmaker John Doan to produce a video capturing the excitement of three projects by 2017 Teacher Award winners.

 

 

Contact

For more information please contact Michelle Roberts:
[email protected]
413-276-0755

More

Awards Banquet
Partners and Sponsors


Congratulations to our award recipients!

2018