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Miami- Dade - Teachers of the Year
Corps Member Story

TFA Teacher Awarded District-Wide Rookie Teacher of the Year; 20 TFA Teachers Named Rookie Teacher and Teacher of the Year at their Schools

It's that time of year again! We are incredibly proud of TFA teachers Ms. Laura Haim (Miami-Dade '07), awarded District-Wide Rookie Teacher of the Year; Mr. Chris Fisk (Miami-Dade '17), District-Wide Rookie Teacher Runner-Up; and the other 18 TFA Teachers Named Rookie Teacher and Teacher of the Year at their schools. Check out the complete list here!

January 31, 2019

Do you remember the best teacher you ever had?

Likely, they changed and shaped your life for the better. They made you feel magical, unstoppable and inspired.

Now, picture their face. It’s unforgettable, isn’t it? They left a mark on you and influenced the person you’ve become today.

Each day, Teach For America Miami-Dade teachers inspire students.

Meet the Teach For America Miami-Dade teachers who were awarded M-DCPS District-Wide Rookie Teacher of the Year, District-Wide Rookie Teacher of the Year Runner-Up, and 18 others who earned Rookie Teacher and Teacher of the Year Awards at their schools this year:

Teachers of the Year

  • Ms. Sasha Acosta (Miami-Dade '13), Henry West Laboratory School, 3rd Grade ELA/Reading, Gifted Mathematics, Science, Social Studies

  • Ms. Candice Morris (Miami-Dade '13), Goulds Elementary School, 5th Grade ELA

  • Ms. Britney Matthews (Miami-Dade '13), Arcola Lake Elementary School, 4th Grade ELA

  • Ms. Caroline Yopp (Greater Nashville '13), Design and Architecture Senior High School (DASH), Science

Rookie Teachers of the Year

        ★ District-Wide Rookie Teacher of the Year Winner - Ms. Laura Haim (Miami-Dade '07), Pinecrest Elementary School, 5th Grade

        ★ District-Wide Rookie Teacher of the Year Runner-Up - Mr. Chris Fisk (Miami-Dade '17), Miami Northwestern Senior High School, 10th Grade ELA and AP Human Geography

  • Mr. Patrick Baptiste (Miami-Dade '17), Miami Carol City Senior High School, 10th Grade Geometry

  • Mr. Henry Bareiss (Miami-Dade '16), South Dade Senior High School Mathematics

  • Ms. Zahirah Calloway (Miami-Dade '17), Charles Drew K-8 Center, 7th Grade, English Language Arts

  • Ms. Alysha Duelley (Miami-Dade '17), Melrose Elementary School, 3rd-5th Grade English

  • Ms. Jacqueline Eldridge (Miami-Dade '15), Law Enforcement Officers' Memorial High School

  • Ms. Diana Haber (Miami-Dade '17). Madison Middle School, 6th and 7th Grade Intensive Reading

  • Ms. Priscilla Harris (Miami-Dade '16), Edison Park K-8 Center, 5th Grade, Social Studies

  • Ms. Falilah Ibidapo (Miami-Dade '18), Lenora B Smith Elementary, 3rd Grade Reading

  • Mr. Francis Morency (Miami-Dade '17), Linda Lentin K-8 Center, Civics and Law Studies

  • Ms. Oneika Osborne (Detroit '12), Miami Southridge Senior High School, English and Language Arts

  • Ms. Cicely Snead (Miami-Dade '16), Jose de Diego Middle School, Mathematics

  • Ms. Natalie Thomas (Miami-Dade '17), Miami Edison Senior High School, English and Language Arts

  • Ms. Svetlanna Valdes (Miami-Dade '17), Miami Central Senior High School, English and Language Arts

  • Ms. Diana Washington (Miami-Dade '14), North Miami Beach Senior High School, Geometry

TFA Miami-Dade Executive Director, Samantha Hoare, congratulated M-DCPS District-Wide Rookie Teacher of the Year Winner, Ms. Laura Haim, saying, "Laura has a passion for changing children’s lives through classroom teaching. She is a constant learner, always looking for ways to hone her craft. She pays special attention to detail in all that she does: from the lesson plans and activates she curates for students at all ability levels, to classroom seating and décor meant to enhance the learning environment for students. She is committed to supporting every child in reaching their full potential and ensuring that their personal and academic growth are on part with their most advanced peers. This is due to her vision, genuine care for her students, and commitment to understanding students’ needs. Laura's achievement is even sweeter, being that she teaches in her childhood elementary school alongside the same teachers who inspired her love for learning. We are so proud of her recognition as the M-DCPS Rookie Teacher of the Year.”

Xavier Suarez, Manager of Teacher Leadership Development who works closely with District-Wide Rookie Teacher of the Year Runner-Up, Mr. Chris Fisk, said, "Chris embodies the definition of teamwork. Despite having an incredible amount of work with his graduate program, teaching, and his personal life, Chris always finds a way to help out his school community. I’m not surprised that Chris’ hard work, dedication, and compassion for others has led him to win Rookie Teacher of the Year for the Central Region and runner-up for our entire district. I believe there is also something special and inspiring in the fact that the M-DCPS District-Wide Teacher of the Year, Oliver Diez, was Chris' former teacher at Palmetto Elementary School. It shows the impact of a great educator is continuous and can create ripple effects for generations to come."

If you see any of these rockstar teachers, be sure to congratulate them on their achievement!