A teacher working in a Massachusetts school has been named the top educator in the nation.
Sydney Chaffee, a ninth grade teacher with Codman Academy Charter Public School in Dorchester, has been named the 2017 National Teacher of the Year by the Council of Chief State School Officers.
Chaffee was selected as the 2017 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year in May and was named one of the finalists for the national award in January. She is the first national teacher of the year from Massachusetts in the award's 65 years of existence.
"I'm grateful to the Council of Chief State School Officers for this recognition and opportunity, but I also want to thank everyone who inspires me to be a teacher and a learner," Chaffee said. "That group includes my family, my colleagues at Codman and across the country, and, most importantly, my students."
Chaffee has taught English language arts and social studies at the charter for a decade. She both lives and works in Dorchester.
She served as a consultant on EL Education's curriculum project in 2013, collaborating with other educators to design eighth grade English language art curricula.
Chaffee holds a bachelor's degree from Sarah Lawrence College and a master's from Lesley University.
"We are all incredibly proud of Ms. Chaffee and thrilled to see a member of Massachusetts' strong teaching force represented at the national level," said Governor Charlie Baker. "Ms. Chaffee's commitment to her students and relentless drive to continually improve her teaching is a model for all of us."
She was called a "gift to her students, her school and the Commonwealth," by Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, who added, "We are proud to share her with the nation and congratulate her on this tremendous honor."
El Education is a grantee partner of ECMC Foundation. In 2016, we made investments to help scale the El School model in Detroit, Atlanta and at an additional TBD location. Learn more about Sydney Chaffee and El Education.