PEMBROKE — Tyronna Hooker, North Carolina’s Teacher of the Year for 2011-12, will speak at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke on Sept. 28 at 7 p.m. in Moore Hall Auditorium.
The free event is sponsored by the School of Education.
Hooker teaches exceptional children at Graham Middle School in the Alamance-Burlington school system.
“Tyronna brings a unique set of skills to the classroom given her previous work experience in the criminal justice system and social services,” said June Atkinson, the state superintendent of schools. “She has seen what can happen to children who have not been successful in school. This has translated into a ‘setbacks are setups for comebacks’ philosophy where her students are concerned.”
Bill Harrison, chairman of the State Board of Education, also congratulated Hooker on her selection.
“Ms. Hooker’s pathway to the classroom may not have been traditional, but it illustrates that good teachers come to the profession from many different backgrounds,” Harrison said. “Her students are fortunate that she chose to teach, and they are benefiting from her dedication and perspective.”
In accepting the award, Hooker said being named Teacher of the Year provides her with additional opportunities to inspire others.
“As teachers, we must seek opportunities to motivate, engage and provoke critical thinking amongst not only our students, but ourselves,” Hooker said. “I can’t wait to share teaching experiences with my colleagues across the state.”
Hooker has taught for nine years at Graham Middle School. She is a member of the school’s design team, which designs learning experiences, and a member of the school’s Response to Intervention team, an incentive coordinator for the Positive Behavior Intervention Support program and a mentor of new teachers.
Hooker was Alamance-Burlington School District Teacher of the Year 2010-11 and Graham Middle School Teacher of the Year 2010-11; she received the Graham Middle School Outstanding Teacher Award 2008.
She is a graduate of North Carolina Central University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in criminal justice. An online learning program offered through North Carolina Central University enabled her to complete the teacher certification program in 2005. In 2009 she earned her Master of Education degree, specializing in special education, from Elon University.
As North Carolina Teacher of the Year, Hooker will spend the next school year traveling the state as an ambassador for the teaching profession. She also will serve as an adviser to the State Board of Education for two years.