Greater Latrobe EA member named Pennsylvania's 2009 Teacher of the Year
Rebecca Snyder, language arts teacher and member of the Greater Latrobe Education Association, was named Pennsylvania’s 2009 Teacher of the Year. PDE Secretary Gerald L. Zahorchak announced the award at an October 7 ceremony in Harrisburg.
“I look forward to an exciting year representing all the dedicated teachers across the commonwealth,” Snyder said, at the awards ceremony. “This event has validated the reasons we all have come to teaching. I am truly honored to be in the same class with all of you.”
Snyder chairs the language arts department at Greater Latrobe Senior High School and teaches literature and writing courses. She will represent Pennsylvania in the National Teacher of the Year presentation this spring.
Each of the twelve Teacher of the Year finalists was introduced at the awards ceremony by a former student who related how the teacher positively impacted his or her life. Snyder was introduced by Bree Larkin, now a college freshman, who likened her former high school English teacher to a superhero.
“Mrs. Snyder rescued me from the vicious grip of grades and carried me into a world of passionate learning,” Larkin said. “She opened my eyes to the bigger picture of learning by encouraging me to pursue knowledge, not the assignment. She has not forgotten that the people in her classroom have souls that are ready to be awakened and minds just waiting to learn.”
The program is co-sponsored by the PA Department of Education and the PA chapter of the National State Teacher of the Year.
Snyder was chosen from among 12 finalists to represent Pennsylvania in the National Teacher of the Year presentation, scheduled for the spring. 2009 finalists include:
Linda Barthmaier – State College Area School District, Central Region
Linda Baughman – Mechanicsburg Area School District, Southern Region
Robert Hankes – Big Spring School District, Southern Region
Diane Heitzenrater – Hatsboro-Horsham School District, Mideastern Region
Gail Rosenberry – Shippensburg Area School District, Southern Region
Marilyn Rothberg – Great Valley School District, Southeastern Region
Stephanie Ruby – Gateway School District, Western Region
Ronald Shealer – State College Area School District, Central Region
Timothy Spuck – Oil City Area School District, Northwestern Region
Gary Vetre – Upper Darby School District, Southeastern Region
Charles Youngs – Bethel Park School District, Western Region