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Newton educator honored by NEA

WASHINGTON—Legendary football great, literacy champion, author and broadcaster Tiki Barber was among the extraordinary individuals honored February 8 for exceptional contributions to public education at The NEA Foundation’s 13th annual Salute to Excellence in Education Gala at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. 

More than 50 awards were bestowed upon the nation’s top educators, including Diane B. Jaquith, a K-5 art teacher and member of the Newton Teachers Association. The I CAN Learn® Awards for Teaching Excellence funded travel to he gala for Jaquith and other state winners.

Accepting the NEA Foundation Award for Outstanding Service to Public Education, Barber said: “As a product of a public school education, as a champion of literacy and as a parent, I know that a good education can make all the difference in the world. Every day, in 97,000 schools around the nation, our public school teachers are working smart and working hard to prepare young people with the skills and knowledge they are going to need to thrive and succeed in the 21st century.  These champions of education deserve our attention, our praise and our thanks.”

“Our annual gala pays tribute to these men and women whose extraordinary accomplishments are examples of what is possible in public education,” said Harriet Sanford, president and CEO of The NEA Foundation.  “But we remain committed to helping all educators realize their own potential.  By investing in public education through grants and other programs, The NEA Foundation is working to inspire and enable teachers to prepare every child to learn and thrive in a rapidly changing world.  This is our mission.  It is what drives us every single day.”  

“We are all impressed by the level of talent exhibited by all the awardees.  NEA and its 3.2 million members congratulate the gala awardees and organizations for their contributions and the pivotal roles they play in advancing public education issues,” said Reg Weaver, NEA president.  “Efforts such as these are not only commendable, they are critical in making good on our commitment to providing great public schools for every child.” 

--NEA media release

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