NEA Foundation honors 2014 Teacher of the Year

MTA President Paul Toner and Anne Marie Osheyack at the 2014 MTA Annual Meeting of Delegates. MTA President Paul Toner and Anne Marie Osheyack at the 2014 MTA Annual Meeting of Delegates.

Anne Marie Osheyack, the 2014 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year, will receive a 2015 Award for Teaching Excellence from the NEA Foundation.

The award places Osheyack among 39 public educators who will be honored at the NEA Foundation’s Salute to Excellence in Education gala in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 13.

Osheyack is an English language arts teacher at Northampton High School.

MTA President Paul Toner said Osheyack “is a master of transferring her love of books, literature and great writing to her students and motivating them to be their best.”

“Anne Marie brings an incredibly refreshing and honest approach to her classroom and her school community,” Toner said. “This honesty is reflected back by her students, who are as devoted to her as she is to them.”

Known as the “Academy Awards” ceremony of public education, the gala is an annual celebration of the men and women who work in America’s public schools.

Five finalists will be selected from the 39 state awardees receiving the 2015 California Casualty Award for Teaching Excellence, which provides $650 for each educator’s school.

The five finalists will each receive $10,000. At the conclusion of the gala, one finalist will be named the nation’s top educator and will receive an additional $25,000.

Osheyack was nominated by the MTA. In addition to teaching in Northampton, she works with the Western Massachusetts Writing Project, leading courses for fellow teachers on concepts such as understanding by design, content literacy and persuasive and argument writing.

She has worked in Uganda, co-teaching with educators there to help them develop skills and strategies to facilitate learning in classrooms, and she is the co-author of “Teaching in the Real World: Strategies to Survive and Thrive.”