Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Palm Harbor Middle School math instructor to learn if she's Florida's top teacher

Palm Harbor Middle School teacher Vanessa Ko gives her thanks after learning that she was the Pinellas County Outstanding Educator of the Year during the ceremony at Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg on Jan. 31, 2017. [LARA CERRI | Times]

Palm Harbor Middle School teacher Vanessa Ko gives her thanks after learning that she was the Pinellas County Outstanding Educator of the Year during the ceremony at Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg on Jan. 31, 2017. [LARA CERRI | Times]

ORLANDO — A Palm Harbor Middle School math instructor will learn tonight if she's the top teacher in the state.

Vanessa Ko is among five candidates for Florida's Teacher of the Year, which will be announced tonight during an annual award gala at Universal Studios Orlando.

The winner will be announced Thursday during an annual award gala at Universal Studios Orlando.

Ko began her career in the Pinellas school system 13 years ago at Palm Harbor Middle, teaching math and AVID classes. Along the way, she has become a district pioneer for the AVID program, which, according to the district, aims to "close the achievement gap by preparing all students for college readiness and success in a global society."

Ko was named the Pinellas Outstanding Educator of the Year in January.

RELATED: Pinellas Educator of the Year: a math teacher who brings 'a nurturing heart' to the equation

The other finalists: Katelyn Fiori from Vero Beach Elementary School; mathematics teacher Tammy Jerkins from Leesburg High School; exceptional education teacher Diego Fuentes from Hillcrest School in Marion County; and Michael Miller from Kissimmee Elementary School.

The Teacher of the Year winner will receive $25,000 from the Florida Department of Education and Macy's, as well as an all-expense-paid trip for four to New York City to attend the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Macy's also is providing the winner with a $1,000 clothing allowance.

Each finalist's school also will receive $1,000 from Macy's.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.

Palm Harbor Middle School math instructor to learn if she's Florida's top teacher 07/13/17 [Last modified: Thursday, July 13, 2017 10:45am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. New Florida drivers licenses, ID cards coming in August

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE – A new look is coming to Florida licenses and ID cards.

    Starting in August, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles will begin to issue the new Florida driver license and ID card. [Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles]
  2. 21 fun places to escape the heat and chill indoors in Tampa Bay

    Events

    A simple walk down the street this summer can feel like it takes years. With the humidity and the Florida sun blazing, no amount of time feels like enough to cool off in summer. To help you regulate, our critics and writers came up with a few places that encourage lingering for just ... a few ... more ... …

  3. Alligator bites man several times at Florida retention pond (w/video)

    Wildlife

    PORT CHARLOTTE — A homeless man was injured after he was bitten several times by a 9-foot alligator at a retention pond Monday morning, authorities said.

  4. Florida Gators' 2018 recruiting class cracks top 10

    Blogs

    While I was out on vacation, the Florida Gators apparently picked up their recruiting.

    By a lot.

  5. Trigaux: Florida's jobless rate looks great — but 25 other state rates look even better

    Economic Development

    No debate here: Florida's unemployment rate continues to drop — even as more people move to Florida and enter the workforce. What's not to like?

    Who remembers the remarkable lines of hundreds of people looking for construction work in Tampa back in March of 2010 at a job fair at the Encore construction site near downtown Tampa? Now the construction industry is struggling to find skilled workers to meet building demand. [
JOHN PENDYGRAFT | TIMES]