The 2016 teachers of the year in the Jefferson Parish Public School System are third-grade teacher Pablo M.M. Pato, of Geraldine Boudreaux Elementary; eighth-grade teacher Shannon Walker, of Henry Ford Middle School; and ninth-grade teacher Riley Collins, of Grace King High School.
The principals of the year are Suzanne Bordlee, of Leo Kerner Jr. Elementary School; Faith Joseph, of Henry Ford Middle School; and Jaime Zapico, of Patrick F. Taylor Science and Technology Academy.
The teacher of the year and principal of the year programs are run by the Louisiana Department of Education.
Pato teaches science, social studies, math and Spanish at Boudreaux. He holds a master’s degree with a specialization in foreign language from the University of Oviedo, Spain.
Walker has taught in the district for 16 years, beginning at Marrero Middle and currently as an English language arts teacher at Ford. She holds a bachelor of science degree from Dillard University and a certification in elementary education from Southern University in New Orleans.
Collins graduated from Boston College with a bachelor of arts degree and has taught Algebra I at King for three years.
Using her fluency in Spanish to incorporate dual language strategies in her Algebra I classes, Collins has “created an avenue for previously underserved students,” according to her principal, Meg Griffon.
Bordlee has been Kerner’s principal for four years. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of New Orleans. She was previously an assistant principal at Janet Elementary and a teacher at Hart Elementary.
Joseph has led Ford for eight years. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Southeastern Louisiana University and a master of education degree from the University of New Orleans. Her prior JPPSS experience includes teaching, serving as the dean of students and twice leading schools as the assistant principal.
Zapico has led Taylor for the past six years as principal. She has a bachelor of arts degree and a master of education degree from the University of New Orleans. In 2013, Zapico was named JPPSS Middle School Principal of the Year.
The district’s honorees are now eligible to be selected as the statewide Teacher of the Year and Principal of the Year by the LDOE. Semifinalists for the state recognition will be announced in February, and finalists will be announced in July. For information on the programs, visit www.louisianabelieves.com/teaching/award-programs.