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California Department of Education News Release
Release: #12-105
November 8, 2013
Contact: Tina Jung
E-mail: communications@cde.ca.gov
Phone: 916-319-0818

State Schools Chief Tom Torlakson Names California Teachers of the Year

Torlakson also nominates Oakland educator for National Teacher of the Year

SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson today named five exemplary educators as the 2013 California Teachers of the Year. Profiles and contact information for each teacher are attached.

"These five wonderful teachers have shown the kind of skill, passion, and dedication that exemplify the very best of the most important, most demanding, and most rewarding profession there is: teaching," Torlakson said. "I congratulate and thank them all for the work they are doing to brighten the future of their students and our state."

The five California Teachers of the Year are:

I'Asha Warfield is a grade seven English teacher at Oakland's Frick Middle School in the Oakland Unified School District, Alameda County. Torlakson also nominated Warfield as California's representative for the National Teacher of the Year competition.

Sebastien Paul De Clerck is a grade nine through twelve French and Italian language teacher at Ventura High School in the Ventura Unified School District, Ventura County.

David Goldenberg is a grade ten and eleven history teacher at Irvine's Arnold O. Beckman High School in Tustin Unified School District, Orange County.

Veronica Marquez is a grade five multi-subject teacher in Los Angeles' Harmony Elementary School in the Los Angeles Unified School District, Los Angeles County.

Martin Reisert is a grade six multiple-subject teacher in San Diego's Oak Valley Middle School in the Poway Unified School District, San Diego County.

The California Teachers of the Year Program began in 1972 to acknowledge the growing complexity of challenges faced by the profession and the need to promote collaboration among teachers to address challenges. The program is also designed to encourage new teachers to enter the field.

The competition is open to educators teaching prekindergarten through grade twelve. County offices of education nominate winners through their regional Teachers of the Year competitions. A state selection committee reviews candidates' applications and conducts site visits to evaluate the teachers' rapport with students, classroom environment, presentation skills, and teaching methods, among other criteria. The teachers are interviewed at the California Department of Education in Sacramento. The State Superintendent then selects the five awardees.

The 2013 California Teachers of the Year, the finalists, and semi-finalists will be honored by Torlakson at a gala to be held February 11, 2013. The list of finalists and semi-finalists is attached. For more information on the award program, please visit the California Department of Education's California Teachers of the Year Web page. Pictures of the 2013 California Teachers of the Year are posted on the Department's Multimedia Web page.

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Attachments

The 2013 California Teachers of the Year

I'Asha Warfield
Seventh Grade English Teacher
Frick Middle School
Oakland Unified School District
Also, National Teacher of the Year Nominee

"It is my aim that students are able to use their life experiences and connect them to the world through analysis and evaluation. Simultaneously, I hope that with the skills they develop they are able to look beyond their own experience to critically and creatively engage in this world."

—I'Asha Warfield, from her 2013 California Teacher of the Year Application

Warfield has taught English and reading intervention, and world history at Frick Middle School since 2000. She also works as a coach in the Beginning Teacher Support and Assessment program to help guide new teachers through their self-assessment process in order to clear their California credential. Warfield serves as a representative in Frick's Instructional Leadership Team to help assess the instructional needs of the school through data analysis and teacher feedback. She also works as a consultant to the Bay Area Writing Project that presents teacher trainings on secondary literacy with an emphasis on writing. Her prior experience includes working as a consultant with the California Reading and Literature Project; a corps member advisor at Teach for America Summer Institute; a collaborating teacher at the University of California, Berkeley and Mills College; and an assistant language teacher with the Japanese Exchange Teaching Programme, Miyagi, Japan.

"Ms. Warfield has an innovative way to ensure her students are learning, by having them write down their own daily learning targets," said Tom Torlakson. "Then she uses these learning target sheets to evaluate whether the students master the lesson that also helps inform her of how well she is teaching. This constant cycle of evaluation keeps her students learning and keeps herself at the top of her game."

Warfield earned a Master of Science degree in Education at California State University, East Bay; and a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology at Occidental College. She earned her Single Subject—English Teaching Credential at CSU, East Bay; and her Multiple Subject Teaching Credential at Patten University. Warfield received numerous accolades, including Oakland's Honoring Our Own Secondary Teacher, Oakland Teacher of the Year, and Phi Alpha Alpha Outstanding Teacher awards.

Warfield may be reached through Frick Middle School at iasha.warfield@ousd.k12.ca.us or 510-729-7736.

Sebastien Paul De Clerck
Grades Nine-Twelve French and Italian Language Teacher
Ventura High School
Ventura Unified School District

"I teach all students. I know their individual potential and I mold myself and my teaching to suit. My energy, my patience, my passion, my love of youth, my knowledge of what I teach and respect for whom I teach are the elements that make me the teacher I am."

— Sebastien Paul De Clerck, from his 2013 California Teacher of the Year Application

De Clerck has been teaching French and Italian at Ventura High School since 2005. His prior experience includes teaching French, English, grade nine study skills and college readiness, as well as serving as the World Language Department Chair at Ventura High School and as the Gifted and Talented Education coordinator at San Marcos High School. He also taught multiple subjects at the Soledad Enrichment Action Charter School.

"Mr. De Clerck's passion for teaching foreign language is very evident in the way he interacts with his students," said Torlakson. "He not only respects his students, he knows they want to learn, and has high expectations for them in the classroom. His colleague, Dan Nelson, said it best, that De Clerck ‘does not just close the achievement gap, he demolishes it' by the way he teaches."

De Clerck earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Italian and philosophy at the University of Southern California. He earned his Single Subject Teaching Credential at CSU, Northridge; and an Italian Language & Culture Certificate from the Università di Firenze. De Clerk won numerous accolades, including the Ventura County Office of Education Educator of the Year, Ventura Chamber of Commerce Teacher of the Month, and Barnes & Noble "My Favorite Teacher" Award, among others. De Clerck is also a member of several professional associations, including the Ventura Unified Educators' Association, California Teachers Association, and National Educators Association, among others.

De Clerck may be reached through Ventura High School at sebastien.declerck@venturausd.org or 805-641-5116, extension 2225.

David Goldenberg
Grade Ten-Eleven History Teacher
Arnold O. Beckman High School
Tustin Unified School District

"I do not see students as they are today, but as the people that they can become—I want my students to see possibilities, to overcome adversity, and to become the best versions of themselves."

—David Goldenberg, from his 2013 California Teacher of the Year Application

Goldenberg has taught Advanced Placement and honors classes in world history at Arnold O. Beckman High School since 2005. His prior experience includes teaching world history at A.G. Currie Middle School and teaching on special assignment at Tustin Unified School District. He also has extensive experience providing staff development, mentorships, and training for other teachers.

"Mr. Goldenberg makes history come alive for his students that makes them feel engaged and eager to learn," said Torlakson. "He sees his career as a calling to serve his country in a profession that has meaning. Every school day, he teaches as if it's a wonderful opportunity to make a difference in the lives of his students."

Goldenberg earned his Master of Science degree in educational leadership and his Bachelor of Arts degree in political science at CSU, Fullerton. He also earned his Crosscultural, Language and Academic Development Single Subject Teaching Credential in social science at National University. Goldenberg won numerous accolades, including Teacher of the Year at Tustin Unified School District, Beckman High School, and Currie Middle School, among others.

Goldenberg may be reached through Arnold O. Beckman High School at dgoldenberg@tustin.k12.ca.us or 714-734-2900.

Veronica Marquez
Grade Five Multi-Subject Teacher
Harmony Elementary School
Los Angeles Unified School District

"I make home visits to better understand the students I serve…. I establish a positive relationship with parents and students that transfer into the classroom. I believe it is my duty to empower my students to be agents of change."

—Veronica Marquez, from her 2013 California Teacher of the Year Application

Marquez has taught multiple subjects, Gifted and Talented Education, Sheltered English Immersion, and bilingual education at Harmony Elementary School since 2004. Prior to this, she taught at Trinity Elementary School. She also has extensive experience providing staff development, mentorships, and training for other teachers.

"Ms. Marquez has made a remarkable journey as a child from the inner city and then decided to stay in her community to help lift other children out of lives of poverty and despair," said Torlakson. "She sees herself as a gardener who watches her students bloom under her leadership, and sees her students as scholars worthy of better lives."

Marquez earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology at UC Los Angeles. She also received her National Board Certification in English as a New Language. She received her Crosscultural, Language, and Academic Development Certificate from UCLA Extension, and her Clear Multiple Subject Teaching Credential at Los Angeles Unified School District, District Intern Program. She is also a member of several professional organizations including the National Teachers Association, California Teachers Association, and United Teachers Los Angeles. Marquez received the Los Angeles Unified School District Teacher of the Year award.

Marquez may be reached through Harmony Elementary School at vxv1119@lausd.net or 323-238-0791.

Martin Reisert
Grade Six Multiple-Subject Teacher
Oak Valley Middle School
Poway Unified School District

"I have based the core of my teaching philosophy on these four words, ‘I believe in you.' When children know I believe in them, learning occurs, and they begin to believe in themselves."

—Martin Reisert, from his 2013 California Teacher of the Year Application

Reisert has taught multiple subjects, Gifted and Talented Education, and Resource Specialist Program clusters at Oak Valley Middle School since 2005. His prior experience includes teaching similar subjects at Bernardo Heights Middle School and Chaparral Elementary School. He also has extensive experience providing staff development, mentorships, and training for other teachers.

"Mr. Reisert became the wonderful teacher he is today by living through a challenging childhood and the joy of having a teacher who believed in him," said Torlakson. "He knows if he can instill a sense of confidence in his students, then they can succeed and change their lives for the better."

Reisert earned his Master of Science degree in education-elementary education and Bachelor degree in business administration at Dowling College, New York. He received his Teaching Credential from the State of New York as well as California. He is a member of two professional associations, the Poway Federation of Teachers and the United States Professional Tennis Association. He also received numerous accolades, including San Diego County Teacher of the Year, Poway Unified School District Teacher of the Year, and Oak Valley Middle School Teacher of the Year, among others.

Reisert may be reached through Oak Valley Middle School at mreisert@powayusd.com.

The 2013 California Teachers of the Year Finalists

County

Name

Subject

Grade Level

School

District

Los Angeles

Kyle McClure

Life & Physical Science

7th-8th

Clifton Middle School

Monrovia Unified School District

Los Angeles

Lynda Okerson

1st Grade

1st

Cullen Elementary School

Glendora Unified School District

Orange

John "H" Wood

Science

6th & 7th

Talbert Middle School

Fountain Valley School District

Riverside

Amyleen Tuiza

Special Ed - Moderate to severe Autism

Elementary level

Phillip Stokoe Elementary School

Riverside County Office of Education

Stanislaus

Lynda Griblin

Multiple subject

4th

Standiford Elementary School

Sylvan Union School District

Yolo

Jerry Delsol

AG Biology, AG Chemistry, Environmental Science

9th-12th

Woodland High School

Woodland Joint Unified School District

The 2013 California Teachers of the Year Semi-Finalists

County

Name

Subject

Grade Level

School

District

Kern

Jeremy Stephen Adams

Social Studies

10th and 12th

Bakersfield High School

Kern Union High School District

Lake

Richard W. Schaut

English, Philosophy

9th, 11th, 12th

Middletown High School

Middletown Unified School District

Los Angeles

Daniel Johns

Physical Education

7th

Richard Henry Dana Middle School

Arcadia Unified School District

Los Angeles

Maryann R. Nielsen

World History, American Government

10th & 12th

South Pasadena High School

South Pasadena Unified School District

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Tom Torlakson — State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Communications Division, Room 5206, 916-319-0818, Fax 916-319-0100

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