Antioch Unified School District 2019-2020 Teacher of the Year receives special visit

Antioch Middle School sixth grade teacher and AUSD Teacher of the Year DarVisa Marshall with County Superintendent of Schools Lynn Mackey during the visit on . Photo courtesy of CCCOE.

Recently, DarVisa Marshall’s six-grade classroom at Antioch Middle School received a visit from Contra Costa County Superintendent of Schools Lynn Mackey. For the past five years, Marshall has been teaching English language arts, English language development, and history. Before joining Antioch Middle, the 21-year teacher had taught the same subjects to grades 3-8 in Oakland and her native city of Cincinnati. This past March, Marshall was named by the Antioch Unified School District as their Teacher of the Year (TOY), and later was selected as one of the four finalists contending for one of the two spots as Contra Costa County TOY. The two county TOYs will then represent Contra Costa County in the California state-wide TOY program.

Throughout the school year, Superintendent Mackey makes it a point to visit each incoming TOY in their classrooms, before they are all honored at the annual Teachers of the Year Gala Dinner. This is a great way for her to meet the teachers and their students, as well as take in the day’s lesson plan.

On the evening of September 26, 2019, the 22 Contra Costa County TOYs, class of 2019-20, including Marshall will be introduced and honored at the renowned annual Teacher of the Year Gala, held at the Hilton Concord. The 22 TOYs will be accompanied by their families, friends, and co-workers. The expected crowd of close to 500 will also include numerous other supporters of the program. For more information about this year’s CCCOE TOY Program, please review this earlier-sent news release.

“This was my first year as a teacher,” says 8th grade English teacher Lorena Bathey. “I joined the world of eighth grade at Antioch Middle School and I was beyond nervous. My first day of teaching was a lesson for me in how not ready I was. I pushed the students out the door so they would not spy my weakness as the tears rolled down my face at the end of sixth period. To Ms. Marshall’s room I ran, no really… I ran, for help, saving a hug. And there was Ms. Marshall, with arms open saying, ‘How can I help you.’ This is a constant phrase from Ms. Marshall to everyone she knows.”

Bathey continues, “Beyond being an incredible teacher who has her student-centered classroom running so smoothly a clockmaker would be impressed, she is always striving to be more. From pursuing her National Board Certification, to being active with the Antioch Education Association, to serving as the school’s English chairperson, to mentoring a brand-new teacher like me, Ms. Marshall is all about helping Antioch Middle School.”

Currently, there are approximately 8,637 teachers educating nearly 178,000 students in Contra Costa County’s public schools. To recognize their efforts and bring much-deserved honor to the teaching profession, the participating school districts in the county named their TOY representatives in mid-March.

The incoming 22 TOYs represent 17 Contra Costa County school districts, the Contra Costa Community College District, and the Contra Costa County Office of Education (CCCOE). Most of these representatives, those who teach grades TK-12, are eligible to compete in the Contra Costa County TOY competition. The two top teachers in the county TOY program will represent Contra Costa County in the California State TOY Program this coming fall.

Note regarding eligible participants:

Each year, one instructor from Contra Costa Community College District is submitted to the TOY program for his/her outstanding body of work with their designated college. The colleges rotate each year between Diablo Valley, Los Medanos, and Contra Costa. (These instructors do not compete in the State Teacher of the Year competition.) This year is Contra Costa College’s turn.

Due to the larger number of students and teachers in their districts, West Contra Costa USD, Mt. Diablo USD, and San Ramon Valley USD are allowed to submit two TOY candidates.

Follow Contra Costa County’s Teacher of the Year program on Twitter and Instagram: #cocotoy

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DarVisa Marshall and Lynn Mackey

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