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2023 Teacher of Excellence Awards

Congratulations to Jennifer Livingston and Michelle Fulsher, winners of the 2023 Oregon Excellence Award in Teaching the English Language Arts.

Livingston is a 20-year veteran educator, currently serving as an English teacher at Newberg High School. Nominator Holly Miele, the coordinator of Teaching and Learning at Newberg Public Schools, says of Livingston, “She is part of the heart and soul of D Hall at Newberg High School. She creatively and skillfully engages everyone from our AP Language achievers, to our struggling students in our mainstream ELA courses. She consistently meets students where they are and challenges and supports them to move forward in their writing skills and reading comprehension. Her students are constantly empowered to speak up and contribute in meaningful ways. She is also a stellar teammate to her fellow teachers by developing authentic partnerships and powerful curriculum that gets everyone on the same page. She is a key reason that we create lifelong learners in our classrooms and she needs to be recognized for this outstanding work.”

Fulsher teaches 8th grade language arts at Gordon Russell Middle School.  Nominator Jeanne Sheets-Sagoo says Fulsher “pour[s] all of her energy, time, and compassion into her role as an 8th grade instructor. Michelle is an exemplary teacher. She serves as a teacher leader, both on her own LA team at Gordon Russell Middle School and for other district teachers. Michelle frequently steps up to share lessons and teaching strategies with other MS teachers at district trainings. She is a noteworthy presenter who keeps both student - and adult learners - engaged. Michelle most recently has helped to draft an 8th grade scope and sequence, lending her years of expertise and experience to a task centered in equity and access for all students. On her own time, Michelle has offered a teacher learning course to her colleagues in the district. Michelle also worked to earn her National Board Certification in 2011. Michelle Fulsher is a gifted educator that creates a classroom of rigor and engagement; she remarkably finds time to lift up her colleagues, as well.”

OCTE sends thanks and applause to Jennifer and Michelle for making a difference in the lives of Oregon students and teachers alike.

Oregon Excellence Awards in Teaching the English Language Arts

To recognize excellence in teaching, the Oregon Council of Teachers of English (OCTE) invites any Oregon school to nominate one outstanding English language arts educator for one of these prestigious annual awards. A strong equal opportunity organization, we welcome nominations from anyone at any level of education—elementary, middle, secondary, two-year college, four-year college or university—but nominations must be limited to one per school.

To be nominated, the educator must have taught at least five years in any Oregon school at any level. In the opinion of the nominator, the educator must have created a particularly noteworthy record in teaching the English language arts. The nominator—with or without the assistance of the candidate—should nominate via online form (see below).

OCTE invites all Oregon teachers to submit completed Nomination Forms and Paragraphs to the OCTE Board of Directors for review and selection of annual Finalists. The nomination deadline is April 6.  

After receiving nominations, the Council will call on experts to select finalists. Those teachers selected as finalists will be required to submit additional supporting evidence. Finalists and award winners will be recognized at the Fall OCTE conference.

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