The Grade Blog

Tuesday, May 06 2014 06:10 PM

Kern County teachers of the year announced

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    By Rod Thornburg / Special to The Californian

    Kern County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Christine Lizardi Frazier, left, poses for pictures with the best of the best. Winners of Kern County Teacher of the Year awards are alternate Marie Sampson, along with winners Kip Glazer and Melissa Ann Bradex. The winners will also represent Kern County at the state level.

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    By Rod Thornburg / Special to The Californian

    Independence High School teacher Kip Glazer, left, receives a hug from Kern County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Christine Lizardi Frazier. Glazer was one of the winners of Teacher of the Year for Kern County, and will go on to the state competition.

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    By Rod Thornburg / Special to The Californian

    Family, friends and peers give Melissa Ann Bradex, left, a round of applause as she was named a Kern County Teacher of the Year. Dr. Christine Lizardi Frazier, Kern County Superintendent of Schools, joins in on the congratulations of the teacher from the Wasco Union Elementary School District.

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    By Rod Thornburg / Special to The Californian

    Marie Sampson from Kernville Union School District comes to the front of the room to accept Teacher of the Year alternate for Kern County. Sampson was one of the 51 teachers who were nominated for this award.

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    By Rod Thornburg / Special to The Californian

    Fifty-one educators wait for their turn to be recognized as nominees for Kern County Teacher Of The Year at the Bakersfield Museum of Art on Tuesday. The winners will represent Kern County at the state level.

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    By Rod Thornburg / Special to The Californian

    The audience watches the nominees for Kern County Teacher of the Year come up for their awards. the winners will represent Kern County at the state level. The event was held at the Bakersfield Museum of Art.

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    By Rod Thornburg / Special to The Californian

    A large crowd came to see their friends, family and co-workers who were nominated for Kern County Teacher of the Year during a ceremony at the Bakersfield Museum of Art.

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BY LAUREN FOREMAN Californian staff writer lforeman@bakersfield.com

Independence High's Kip Glazer and Palm Avenue School's Melissa Bradex were honored Tuesday as 2013-14 Kern County teachers of the year.

Marie Sampson, a teacher at Woodrow Wallace Elementary School in the Kernville Union School District, was named an alternate.

The Kern County Superintendent of Schools office selected the trio from a pool of 51 Kern teachers nominated by schools and districts.

The finalists are eligible to apply for California State Teachers of the Year honors later this year.

Ann Georgian, a KCSOS director of school-community partnerships, said a committee of educators and community leaders reviews applications and visits candidates' classrooms.

"It's amazing some of the stories we get," Georgian said.

In the Kern High School District, Glazer implemented a web design program and collaborated with the Boys & Girls Club of Kern County to launch a community computer coding program.

She teaches English, Advanced Placement English Literature and web design courses and is working on a doctorate in learning technologies.

Twenty years ago, the Korean-born educator did not even know English.

"She not only learned English, but got through college and several teaching credentials," Georgian said.

Bradex, whose school is in the Wasco Union Elementary School District, has been teaching and mentoring kids since early childhood -- even as she was growing up in foster homes, according to KCSOS.

In college, the office said, she began writing a children's book chronicling her upbringing in the government system and road to becoming a teacher. It's now published.

Bradex is also credited with searching for new ways to improve her teaching through post-graduate studies.

Sampson teaches young special needs students and, according to KCSOS, "is enthusiastic, energetic and brings a ray of sunshine into the room where children work and learn."

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