County Teacher of the Year Jay Tweet, who teaches 12th-grade history and social science at El Capitan High School in the Grossmont Union High School District, was named a finalist for California Teacher of the Year.
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond recently announced the five 2021 California Teachers of the Year, as well as seven finalists, with Tweet among them.
“For so long I've considered myself an educational outsider, so being named a finalist for the entire state is wild and unexpected,” Tweet said. “I'm grateful for this opportunity to speak on behalf of teachers across the state and I hope to be a part of the discussions about education moving forward as we address the educational issues brought to light during the current pandemic: the lack of student motivation, responsibility, and control over their own learning, the learning loss from distance learning, and the achievement gap for students of color and, increasingly, boys.”
Tweet was one of five teachers named San Diego County Teacher of the Year in August. The other honorees include Arah Allard, Del Mar Union School District; Christine Hill, Ramona Unified School District; Jose Melo, Valley Center-Pauma Unified School District; and Paula Richardson, San Diego Unified School District.
The County Teachers of the Year were selected from among 40 nominees, all of whom will be recognized during the 30th Anniversary of Cox Presents: A Salute To Teachers brought to you by San Diego County Credit Union. Produced by Cox Communications, in partnership with the San Diego County Office of Education, this year’s show will be a pre-recorded television special airing at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 21 on Cox’s YurView Network (Cox Channel 4 and 1004 and Spectrum Channel 4).
Tweet, Allard, Hill, Melo, and Richardson were all submitted as candidates for state honors. Tweet was selected by the state to move forward in the process, and asked to submit a lesson plan and video of himself teaching.
The California Department of Education selection committees review the applications; evaluate teachers' rapport with students, classroom environments, presentation skills, and teaching techniques; and interview the teachers. State Superintendent Thurmond then selects the five California Teachers of the Year and the National Teacher of the Year nominee.