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Sacramento County Teachers of the Year 2015 Announced

San Juan Unified and River Delta Unified Teachers Advance to State Competition

Two high school English teachers, one from the San Juan Unified School District and one from the River Delta Unified School District, are the Sacramento County Teachers of the Year 2015. The Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) made the announcement at a countywide teacher recognition dinner on August 15.

Michelle Bebout teaches a 9th through 11th grade English at Casa Roble High School in the San Juan Unified School District. Jennifer Walker teaches English and AP English at both Clarksburg Middle School and Delta High School in the River Delta Unified School District.

Both teachers are also AVID certified instructors. AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) is an elective and school-wide system that promotes increased college eligibility and access to rigorous curriculum offering students a clear-cut path to college, beginning in their middle school years.

A committee of education professionals, including previous Teachers of the Year, interviewed the district Teachers of the Year and selected the two finalists. All 16 Sacramento-area teachers will be honored during special Teacher Appreciation Nights hosted by both the Sacramento Kings and the Sacramento River Cats. Dates and times to be announced.

All of the school districts within the County of Sacramento, along with local charter schools and SCOE, are invited to participate each year in the Sacramento County Teachers of the Year program. Larger districts are eligible to submit two entries. Twelve local districts, including SCOE, participated this year. Each district's Teacher of the Year completed a comprehensive application packet, which included an extensive biography and answered questions ranging from personal philosophy of teaching to an understanding of current education issues.

During the awards ceremony, each district Teacher of the Year was introduced by a current or former student, or a student's parent. David W. Gordon, Sacramento County Superintendent of Schools, and trustees from the Sacramento County Board of Education, presented each of the Teachers of the Year with an award.

Outgoing Teachers of the Year 2014 Deanna Victor (San Juan Unified) and Tim Smith (Elk Grove Unified) announced the names of the honorees. Sacramento County Board of Education President Brian Rivas presented the winners with the Elinor Lincoln Hickey Award of Merit, the highest honor bestowed by the County Board of Education. Russell Godt, representing the Sacramento Scottish Rite Bodies of Freemasonry, awarded a perpetual trophy to the County Teachers of the Year.

Michelle Bebout and Jennifer Walker are now eligible to advance to the statewide competition, out of which five teachers will be chosen as California Teachers of the Year. Last year, Elk Grove Unified's Tim Smith was chosen as the California Teacher of the Year to represent the state in the national competition.

California Teachers of the Year are responsible for representing the teaching profession in a variety of settings and assisting their teaching colleagues in numerous ways throughout 2015. Their names, and that of the individual selected as the state's nominee to the National Teacher of the Year program, will be announced later in the fall by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson.

The Sacramento County Teachers of the Year Program is presented by the Sacramento County Office of Education in partnership with the Sacramento Kings, the Sacramento River Cats, Intel Corporation Folsom, SAFE Credit Union, and Sacramento Scottish Rite Bodies of Freemasonry.

Photo Teacher
Kimberly Butler Portrait Kimberly Butler
Center Joint Unified School District
Cyril Spinelli Elementary School
2nd–4th Grade Special Education
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Patricia Burgess Portrait Patricia Burgess
Elk Grove Unified School District
John Ehrhardt Elementary School
3rd Grade
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Karen Sarafian-Hames Portrait Karen Sarafian-Hames
Elk Grove Unified School District
Foulks Ranch Elementary School
2nd Grade
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Rebecca Nelson Portrait Rebecca Nelson
Elverta Joint School District
Elverta Elementary School
6th Grade
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Andrea Allen Portrait Andrea Allen
Folsom Cordova Unified School District
Russell Ranch Elementary School
1st Grade
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Banquet Speech (YouTube) Closed Captioned logotype
Lyn Neumann Portrait Lyn Neumann
Galt Joint Union High School District
Liberty Ranch High School
Social Science, LINK Crew, Yearbook Advisor
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Mike McKibbon Portrait Mike McKibbon
Natomas Unified School District
Inderkum High School
American Government, AP U.S. Government & Politics, CA Early College Academy Coordinator
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Jennifer Walker Portrait Jennifer Walker • Selected as County TOY 2015
River Delta Unified School District
Delta High School
11th & 12th Grade English, AP English
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Holly Paine Portrait Holly Paine
Robla School District
Robla Elementary School
3rd Grade
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Banquet Speech (YouTube) Closed Captioned logotype
Jennifer Clemens Portrait Jennifer Clemens
Sacramento City Unified School District
Arthur A. Benjamin Health Professions High School
9th Grade Medical Science; 11th-12th Grade Anatomy & Physiology, Medical Terminology
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Arlette Garcia Portrait Arlette Garcia
Sacramento City Unified School District
Earl Warren Elementary School
4th–6th Grade (Looped)
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Oluchi Okemiri Portrait Oluchi Okemiri
Sacramento County Office of Education
Prairie West Elementary School
4th–6th Grade Special Education
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Banquet Speech (YouTube) Closed Captioned logotype
Michelle Bebout Portrait Michelle Bebout • Selected as County TOY 2015
San Juan Unified School District
Casa Roble Fundamental High School
9th–10th Grade English, AVID, AVID Coordinator
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Sue Walden Portrait Sue Walden
San Juan Unified School District
Mary Deterding Elementary School
3rd Grade Rapid Learners
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Sarah Kesty Portrait Sarah Kesty
Twin Rivers Unified School District
Oakdale
Special Education/RSP (now 2nd Grade)
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Allison Taylor Portrait Allison Taylor
Twin Rivers Unified School District
Martin Luther King, Jr. Technology Academy
7th–8th Grade Special Education
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Teachers being interviewed on TV set

Michelle Bebout and Jennifer Walker were interviewed by Teo Torres on Monday, August 18, on the KCRA 3 News at 7 a.m. on MY58.​