Jenna Free is an English teacher and Virginia Teachers for Tomorrow instructor at Tallwood High School in Virginia Beach and now she’s also the 2017 Virginia Beach City Public Schools Citywide Teacher of the Year.
VBCPS Superintendent Dr. Aaron Spence made a surprise trip to one of Ms. Free’s AP English classes Monday morning, where he broke the good news.
“We have been celebrating teachers all year in our Great Dreams Need Great Teachers campaign, and Jenna Free exemplifies that spirit as an educator who is passionate about teaching and making a difference in the lives of children,” said Spence. “She creates a classroom environment that fosters student ownership of learning, nurtures academic rigor and develops positive relationships. It is evident that Jenna’s personalized approach ensures her students achieve at their maximum potential while also feeling cared for and supported as learners and young adults. She embodies our division’s core values of student-centered decision making, continuous learning, innovation, collaboration and respect.”
Free has been teaching for nine years, eight of those years have been at Tallwood.
Free was selected as the 2017 Citywide Teacher of the Year from a pool of 87 Teachers of the Year. The other finalists are: Suzanne Buhner, Grade 5 teacher, John B. Dey Elementary School; Adrian Hayes, Grades 7/8 English teacher, Kemps Landing/Old Donation School; Adrienne Kravchak, gifted resource teacher, White Oaks Elementary and Melissa Smith, Grades K-5 reading specialist at Parkway Elementary School.
Congratulations to all of the Teachers of the Year, and especially Ms. Free for all of her hard work!