Click photo to enlarge
Monte Gardens Elementary School first grade teacher Shannon Prichard is photographed with her classroom in Concord, Calif., on Friday, March 29, 2013. Prichard is one of two Teachers of the Year in the Mt. Diablo School District. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Staff)

PLEASANT HILL -- Twenty-two outstanding teachers have been named by school districts across Contra Costa County as teachers of the year, recognized for their strong teaching in student classrooms.

"Once again, we have a tremendous group of teachers who have earned their school districts' highest accolades, due to their talents, work ethic and dedication they provide for their students," said Joseph Ovick, Contra Costa County Superintendent of Schools, in a Thursday statement.

Twenty who teach students in prekindergarten through 12th grade will vie for the County Teacher of the Year award in September. Two more who teach adult students are not eligible to advance to the county and state competitions but will be recognized alongside their peers at the County Teacher of the Year awards next fall. Large districts named two representatives.

The 2013-14 district Teacher of the Year representatives are Nita Madra, Campolindo High (Acalanes district); Erin Clark, Sutter Elementary (Antioch); Shannon Morton, Brentwood Elementary (Brentwood); Jeanne Turner, Excelsior Middle School (Byron); Sherry Diestler, Contra Costa College; Jennifer Martinez, Career Technical Education/Regional Occupational Program Clinical Medical Assistant Program (Contra Costa County Office of Education); Vincent Pitzulo, John Swett High (John Swett); Lois Laza, Knightsen Elementary (Knightsen); Cooper Howard, Stanley Middle School (Lafayette); Lloyd Cornwell, Liberty High (Liberty); Kitty West, Las Juntas Elementary (Martinez); Kim Lockett, Joaquin Moraga Intermediate (Moraga); Shannon Prichard, Monte Gardens Elementary (Mt.


Advertisement

Diablo); Carissa Sugden, El Monte Elementary (Mt. Diablo); Melanie Long, Delta Vista Middle (Oakley); Therese Long, Sleepy Hollow Elementary, Orinda; Miranda Viechec-Lingbaoan, Heights Elementary, Pittsburg; Cindy Egan, San Ramon Valley High (San Ramon Valley); Nicholas Zefeldt, Live Oak Elementary (San Ramon Valley); Sandy Ball, Parkmead Elementary (Walnut Creek); Beth Levine, Montalvin Manor Elementary (West Contra Costa); and Steve Mainini, Kennedy High (West Contra Costa).

Later this month, a committee will screen the applications and name five semifinalists, who will be observed in their classrooms and interviewed by the committee. Three finalists will be announced in May.

More information about the competition is available by calling 925-942-3429 or by going to www.cocoschools.org.