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Sacramento County Teachers of the Year 2020 Announced

Elk Grove and Twin Rivers Teachers Advance to State Competition

Gewon Richards and Julie Fong holding trophies

Gewon Richards (left) and Julie Fong have been selected as Sacramento County Teachers of the Year 2020.

An elementary school special education teacher and a high school alternative education teacher are the Sacramento County Teachers of the Year 2020. The Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) made the announcement Friday at its countywide teacher recognition dinner.

Julie Fong is a special education teacher for students with mild to moderate disabilities at Elk Grove Elementary School (Elk Grove Unified School District). Gewon Richards is an alternative education teacher at Vista Nueva Career and Technology High School (Twin Rivers Unified School District). Both teachers are now eligible to advance to the statewide competition where five teachers will be chosen as California Teachers of the Year.

Sacramento County Board of Education President Bina Lefkovitz presented the winners with the Elinor Lincoln Hickey Award of Merit, the highest honor bestowed by the County Board of Education. Eldon Vipond, representing the Sacramento Scottish Rite Bodies of Freemasonry, awarded perpetual trophies to the County Teachers of the Year.

Throughout the school year, the 15 Sacramento-area teachers will be honored at events hosted by the Sacramento Kings, Republic FC, and River Cats.

The two winners join an elite group of teachers who have represented Sacramento County over the years. Previous Sacramento County Teachers of the Year are listed online—including Elinor Hickey, the namesake of the award the teachers received. Hickey was County Teacher of the Year 1978 and is the namesake of a SCOE school campus.

A selection committee comprised of education professionals, including previous Sacramento County Teachers of the Year, interviewed the local district Teachers of the Year and selected the two winners. Sacramento County school districts, local charter schools, and SCOE are invited to nominate a teacher to participate in the program each year. Large districts are eligible to nominate two teachers.

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

Teachers of the Year on-set being interviewed
The County Teachers of the Year were also interviewed on Monday, August 26, during the KTXL 40 N​ews at 6 a.m.