Cynthia Guzman was teaching her class about World War II and thinking about the school assembly coming up in a half-hour when a knock at her classroom door provided exciting news—and a slight change of plans. Sacramento County Superintendent of Schools David W. Gordon made a surprise visit to Guzman, an 8th grade teacher at Leo A. Palmiter Jr./Sr. High School, to inform her that she had been named the Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) 2019 Teacher of the Year.
“I feel very honored because I feel like I am representing not only myself but also my school and everyone else that I work with,” said Guzman. “It’s a very big honor.”
Guzman has been a SCOE employee since 2014. During her tenure at SCOE, she has designed lessons that incorporate Mock Trial into her civic education curriculum. She has been one of the implementers of Read 180, an intensive intervention program. She has served as Palmiter’s Teacher in Charge for the past two years, along with being the school’s Friday Night Live Advisor. She was also recognized as SCOE’s Certificated Employee of the Month for January 2016.
“Ms. Guzman is an enthusiastic teacher. She is one who cares about the students. She uses a great deal of care in her lesson planning and has the students really interacting with each other,” said Palmiter Principal Lauren Roth. “Because she cares, students know that.”
Guzman will be honored, along with teachers representing other Sacramento County school districts, at the annual County Teachers of the Year awards dinner, which will be held on Friday, August 24, 2018. During the ceremony, two teachers will be named the Sacramento County Teachers of the Year 2019 and will become eligible to compete in the California Teachers of the Year Program. A historical listing of past SCOE Teachers of the Year is available online.