TRENTON, NJ – Michael Skomba, an 11th and 12th-grade Social Studies teacher at Somerville High School has been named Somerset County Teacher of the Year by the state Department of Education.
The NJDOE released its list of 21 New Jersey county winners for the 2017-18 school year on Tuesday.
The County Teachers of the Year are recognized for valuable contributions to their local school communities and are given the opportunity to serve as ambassadors of education to officials at the county and state levels.
“I am thrilled to be able to honor our amazing County Teachers of the Year for 2017-18, and express my appreciation for the work they do for their students,” said Education Commissioner Kimberley Harrington. “New Jersey has many great teachers, and this award is a tribute to the talent, professionalism, and dedication of these 21 educators to inspire the children they teach. I look forward to learning more from them in the months to come.”
In addition to affording opportunities for this group of honored teachers to network with educators throughout the state and county, the NJDOE will count on this group to take valuable resources and materials directly from the Department to local districts. At the same time, the teachers will be invited to serve on state committees and task forces to share their own experiences and points of view at the state level.
County Teachers of the Year are first selected as Teachers of the Year at the school level through the Governor’s Educator of the Year program. They then compete for county recognition and are selected by panels representing a cross-section of administrators, teachers, parents, and county education association representatives convened by the Department’s Executive County Superintendents.
A state-level panel of educators will select New Jersey's State Teacher of the Year based on a written application, video submission, and interviews with the top finalists. The State Teacher of the Year will be announced at the State Board of Education's October meeting, and he or she will go on to represent New Jersey at the National Teacher of the Year competition.
The NJDOE encourages every school district to take advantage of the Governor’s Educator of the Year program as one way to recognize the hard work and dedication of their outstanding teachers. Additional information can be found on the Governor’s Educator of the Year webpage.