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Colorado Teacher of the Year
About the Program
Each year, the Colorado Teacher of the Year Program honors an exceptionally dedicated, knowledgeable and skilled K-12 classroom teacher to represent the entire profession in the state. The selected teacher will automatically become Colorado's nominee for the National Teacher of the Year competition. The national program is a project of the Council of Chief State School Officers. Visit the National Teacher of the Year program webpage for more information.
The Colorado Teacher of the Year receives many professional development opportunities and, along with the country’s other teachers of the year, is honored at a special ceremony at the White House and gets the opportunity to go to NASA’s Space Camp. The teacher also becomes a member of the Colorado Education Commissioner’s Teacher Cabinet.
2024 Colorado Teacher of the Year winner announced
Jessica May, a middle school teacher at Turner Middle School in the Thompson School District, was named the 2024 Colorado Teacher of the Year today in a surprise ceremony at her school.
May teaches family and consumer science at Turner Middle School in Berthoud and taught at Conrad Ball Middle School in Loveland last school year when she was nominated. She has taught for decades in the Thompson School District, covering all manner of subjects including math, social studies, science and language arts.
Seven finalists for 2024 Colorado Teacher of the Year announced
CDE has announced its top candidates for the 2024 Colorado Teacher of the Year competition with the sole finalist to be announced by the end of October. Finalists are listed below in the same order as their photos appear above.
- Rawa Abu Alsamah - Middle school special education teacher, Rocky Mountain Prep, Denver Public Schools
- Danielle Cerna - Sixth grade math and science, Trailside Academy, Mapleton Public Schools
- Ivy Dalley - Sixth grade language arts and social studies, Mancos Middle School, Mancos School District
- Miles Groth - Sixth grade Mountain Academy of Arts and Sciences, Ute Pass Elementary, Manitou Springs School District 14
- Kimberly Kane - Sixth grade English language arts, Delta Middle School, Delta County School District 50J
- Jessica May - Sixth, seventh and eight grade social emotional learning, life skills and reading, Conrad Ball Middle School, Thompson School District *
- Tiffeny O’Dell - Junior high science and career technical education health, Byers Jr./Sr. High School, Byers School District 32J
* At the time of application, Jessica May taught at Conrad Ball Middle School in Loveland. For the 2023-24 school year, Ms. May is now at Turner Middle School in Berthoud, teaching Family and Consumer Science for sixth through eighth graders.
Teacher of the Year Archives
Recent Colorado Teachers of the Year
Colorado Council of the Network of State Teachers of the Year
The Colorado Council of the Network of State Teachers of the Year (NSTOY) is an organization committed to the preservation and enhancement of the Colorado Teacher of the Year Program. The Council works with the Colorado State Department of Education and other corporate and organizational partners to celebrate teaching excellence through the recognition of educators who have inspired a love for learning in their students, and who have distinguished themselves in the profession. All Colorado State Teachers of the Year, as well as each year's finalists, are invited to participate.
For more information on this program, please contact:
Grants Program Administration