Alejandre has been teaching grades 1 through 4 in the district since 1996, nearly all of her 18 years of teaching.
Throughout her time in Ferndale, Alejandre has served on several district committees, including ones for professional learning communities, school schedules, report cards and school improvement teams. She has also served as a mentor teacher for college interns and received her National Board Certification in 2010.
Each year, the state’s nine educational service districts and the tribal school network pick a regional teacher of the year, the first step in the national teacher of the year contest. Out of the regional winners, the state Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction will pick a state teacher of the year, who is then eligible for the national contest.
The press releases from Ferndale and NWESD 189 are below.
Tammy Alejandre, second grade teacher at Eagleridge Elementary School, has been selected as the Northwest Educational Service District’s 2012 Regional Teacher of the Year.
Ms. Alejandre has taught students in grades one through four in Ferndale Schools since 1996. She has been a leader in the district by serving on many district committees including: Professional Learning Community Committee, School Schedule Committee, Report Card Committee, School Improvement Team, Mentor Teacher to College Interns. She became a National Board Certified Teacher in 2010.
Ms. Alejandre believes there are many things teachers control at the local level to close the student achievement gap. “Teachers must know their students’ learning targets, develop assessments that meet the cognitive demand of those learning expectations and analyze data from assessments to accurately identify struggles. Teachers must work collaboratively and intervene to support struggling learners and allow those achievers to continue learning and deepening their understanding of subject matter, challenging them to achieve higher levels of success. Teachers must find interventions that are culturally and developmentally appropriate, and address the way students think. The learning environment ought to be supportive so all students feel valued, and provide varying opportunities for family involvement. Closing the achievement gap cannot mean to stifle learning of some for appearances sake. We truly need to find ways for all to achieve basic education standards and then exceed them, because we have innovated ways to make it happen,” Alejandre said.
Her application will be forward to Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction as a state finalist in consideration for the state level award.
Tammy Alejandre, a board certified teacher from Eagleridge Elementary in Ferndale, has been awarded the 2012 NWESD Regional Teacher of the Year award. Alejandre has been teaching for eighteen years and received strong recommendations from her colleagues, past parents and even a previous student. “Being Mrs. Alejandre’s student, and volunteering in her class, has inspired me to become a teacher myself,” wrote past student Megan Crider in a letter to the selection committee.
Alejandre feels as strongly about providing leadership and working collaboratively with her colleagues as she does about student learning. She was integral in building a School Improvement Team at Eagleridege Elementary, including a lead role in developing SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely) goals for teaching and developing common planning time for grade levels. “The greatest impact on student achievement over time has been a school-wide shift from teaching to student learning,” said Alejandre. Staff members look to her for resources and support, and enjoy her infectiously positive attitude.
In the classroom, Alejandre takes a global approach. “Just like a parent sneaking healthy vegetables into their kids’ favorite foods, I sprinkle reading, writing, and math skills into social studies and science in a way so they don’t even know they’re practicing!” She also uses the scaffolding technique heavily to allow students to build on things they already know. One parent attributed her daughter’s significant improvement in test scores, from 2’s (below standard) to high 3’s (meeting standard) and 4’s (exceeding the standard), to Alejandre’s “teaching techniques, ability to adjust and approach a challenge from a different angle, and willingness to work as a team with parents…”
Alejandre is a leader in her profession, working tirelessly to improve the entire educational process: from mentoring new teachers to identifying solutions for the barriers in the current education system. Eagleridge Principal K. John Fairbairn said it best, “Tammy makes the profession better by being a part of it.”