On Friday November 6, 2015, Karen Hurley, fifth-grade teacher at Bret R. Tarver Elementary in Cartwright Elementary School District, received the surprise of her life when she learned she had been chosen as the 2015 Arizona ELL Teacher of the Year.
The honor was delivered in a school assembly. The entire school was able to celebrate as Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas presented Hurley with the coveted award. District officials including Superintendent Dr. Jacob A. Chávez also attended the celebration.
Hurley had no clue she was going to win. “When I saw my family enter along with a long line of important people, I figured something was going on,” Hurley said.
Hurley grew up in Maryvale and attended the Cartwright School District in her youth. She was excited at the opportunity to give back to her community and has taught for the past twenty years in the Cartwright School District.
In a district with over 90% Latino students, Hurley continuously works to build relationships with her students and improve her craft.
She is one of a few select teachers in the district who has a 21st century classroom, using technology as a way to teach her students and meet the Structured English Immersion (SEI) requirements.
When asked why she thinks she stood out among the other nominees Hurley said, “It’s my students. They make me stand out. My kids are wonderful. They are why I do what I do.”
The Cartwright Elementary School District No.83, located in the West Valley, serves more than 19,000 students in 20 elementary schools.
Cartwright School District is a community of learners with a focus on results collaborating to the unique learning needs of every child by closing the achievement gap and exceeding state and national standards. Learning for All, Every Child, Every School, Every Day.
For more information, visit the district’s website, www.csd83.org.
For more information, please contact Veronica Sanchez, Communications & Community Engagement Director at (623) 691-4003 or cell (602) 359-1138 or Katie Francis, Communications Coordinator at (623) 262-1170.