Carpenter Elementary School, Ann Arbor for its dedication and commitment to arts education. Carpenter has become a model among its peers in the integration of arts into the curriculum, in large part because of the efforts of two teachers, Laura Machida (music) and Meredith Giltner (art), who work tirelessly to create meaningful integration and enhanced learning through the arts. They have solicited grants and parent donations to ensure that Carpenter students experience the performing arts through attendance at performances and in-school artist interactions. Additionally, they participate in UMS Teacher Workshops and integrate the arts into the curriculum at Carpenter, a Title 1 school, in ways that touch both classroom and community, from an after-school gardening program to a student art sale to benefit a family in the school community.
2013 Educator of the Year:
Matt Kazmierski, Ypsilanti Public Schools, honoring his passionate commitment to and advancement of arts education. When the Ypsilanti Public Schools moved sixth grade from middle school to elementary school, the sixth grade band program was in jeopardy. Mr. Kazmierski’s insistence on making sixth-grade band a contributing part of the YPS school-day band program increased access and visibility of the arts to more than 1,000 students, with sixth-grade band participation rising by more than 50%. Creative models of arts access like the one Mr. Kazmierski implemented in YPS will be critical to sustaining access to quality arts education in public schools.