Campus & Community

Singer Prize to acknowledge teachers’ impact

2 min read

The Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE) has asked Harvard College seniors to nominate secondary school teachers who have impacted their lives.

As part of a new award given by the dean’s office, the Singer Prize for Excellence in Secondary Teaching — funded by the Paul Singer Family Foundation — will recognize the extraordinary work of four exceptional teachers. Earlier this month, Harvard College seniors were asked to submit short essays to nominate a particularly influential secondary school teacher for the prize.

“There’s nothing more central to a student’s success than the impact teachers can have,” said James Stiles, associate dean for degree programs. “We want to recognize those teachers doing outstanding work that helps to shape the leaders of tomorrow.”

The nominations will be reviewed by a committee consisting of five HGSE graduate students, five Harvard College juniors, and Lecturer on Education Kitty Boles, the faculty chair, throughout March.

Nominees will be evaluated on the following four criteria:

  • How the teacher influenced the nominating student’s academic life
  • How the teacher influenced the nominating student’s life, in general
  • How the teacher supported the nominating student in overcoming a barrier, challenge, or obstacle
  • How the teacher had a unique impact on the student’s opportunity to attend Harvard College

The committee will select four winners who will each receive $3,000. In addition, each winner will be given $2,500 toward professional development for their school. On May 3, a reception on the HGSE campus will acknowledge the award recipients.

“Our faculty studies the impact teachers have in the classroom, and this prize recognizes those outstanding individuals who have helped some of the students make it to Harvard College,” Stiles said.