Iozzo to represent Greenwich in Connecticut Teacher of the Year program

Cheryl Iozzo is going on to represent the town in the contest to be the best teacher in the state.

Cheryl Iozzo is going on to represent the town in the contest to be the best teacher in the state.

Of all the Distinguished Teachers honored this year, only one could go on to represent Greenwich in the 2015 Connecticut Teacher of the Year program and it’s Cheryl Iozzo, a North Street School K-5 art teacher.

Superintendent of Schools William McKersie made the announcement on Monday, officially naming her as the representative for the Greenwich Public Schools in the annual program. In doing so, he praised her 20 years at the school as a dedicated educator.

“Each of the six 2014 Distinguished Teachers demonstrate a deep commitment to ensuring all their students excel at the highest levels possible,” Dr. McKersie said in a news release. “Any one of the six teachers would be a wonderful nominee to represent the Greenwich Public Schools in the State’s program. After observing the teachers in their classrooms, reviewing their written statements, and conducting a summative interview, I selected NSS Art Teacher Cheryl Iozzo to represent Greenwich.”

Dr. McKersie added that Dr. Iozzo would be a “superb representative” for Greenwich.

“Dr. Iozzo stood out for her 20-year record of using art to cognitively challenge her elementary students in an interdisciplinary fashion,” Dr. McKersie said. “She regularly weaves English/Language Arts, World Languages, Social Studies, Math and now digital devices into her lessons. If art is the window into our minds, hearts, souls and histories, in Cheryl’s deft hands art also is the path to powerful student engagement and learning.”

That high praise was seconded by North Street School Principal Jill Flood who said, “Cheryl Iozzo is an exemplary educator who inspires her students to create beautiful, meaningful works of art. She believes art is a way to channel creativity and emotion. Her students are encouraged to draw from their core beliefs and feelings in order to express themselves in original ways. Walking into Cheryl’s art room is always an incredible experience; children are enthusiastic, engaged and focused on their work. They exhibit the “organized chaos” that she works so hard to maintain. Cheryl is a consummate professional who strives to stay current with best practices and innovations in her field. I am thrilled for Cheryl and know that she will do a fabulous job representing the Greenwich Public Schools at the state level.”

Dr. Iozzo will also be honored by The Distinguished Teachers Awards Committee and by the Greenwich Kiwanis Club at the Board of Education meeting tonight June 17 at 7 p.m. at Glenville School.

The Kiwanis Club will present Dr. Iozzo with the Joseph Mitchell Kaye Award. Mr. Kaye was a past president of the Greenwich Kiwanis Club, a lieutenant governor of the Kiwanis Club for the New England District and served on the Greenwich Board of Education.

As part of the evaluation process of selecting Dr. Iozzo, Dr. McKersie reviewed the nomination packets submitted for each of the six distinguished teachers, spent time in each of their classrooms, debriefed the observations with each teacher and with their principal and reviewed essays submitted as part of the selection process.

Dr. Iozzo began teaching in 1994, and has taught art from a transdisciplinary approach with students in elementary and middle school since that time. She has been with the Greenwich Public Schools for most of her career as an educator, teaching at Central Middle School and North Street School among others.

Dr. Iozzo received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Massachusetts followed by a Master of Arts in Teaching (Visual Arts) from the Rode School of Design. She went on to earn a Doctorate and Masters in Art Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.

In addition to facilitating many student art exhibitions with Greenwich Public Schools, Art on the Avenue and Cos Cob Library, Dr. Iozzo herself has participated in exhibitions at Teachers College, Columbia University, Greenwich Faculty Art Show as well as in galleries. Dr. Iozzo has also taught at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Museum of Modern Art in New York City as well as at the Bruce Museum.

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