State Labor Commissioner Roberta Reardon visited Hoosick Falls Central School (HFCS) on Thursday, May 10, to honor High School Science Teacher Deb Mabey with Governor Cuomo’s Empire State Excellence in Teaching Award.
Teachers are nominated for the award by students, parents, or fellow educators, or they may nominate themselves. Nominees are then asked to fill out a lengthy application for consideration for the award. They are required to outline the ways in which they inspire and motivate their students to continue learning and how they prepare students to succeed in a changing world.
The applications are then reviewed by a panel of state educational leaders from various professional associations, including the School Administrators Association of N.Y. State; N.Y. State United Teachers; the United Federation of Teachers; and the N.Y. State Parent Teacher Association, along with the assistant provost for educator preparation at the State University of New York (SUNY). The winners receive the award plus $5,000 for their continued learning and professional growth.
“This is one of the favorite things I get to do in my job,” said Reardon. “It is an amazing award that supports teaching excellence. We recognize how important the work of our teachers is, and know we need to support them in every way we can. We know the world needs more Deb Mabeys to encourage our youth. Mrs. Mabey is an inspiration to her students and fellow teachers.”
Mabey has been a science teacher at HFCS for 11 years. She earned a bachelor of science degree in nutrition from Michigan State University and her post-baccalaureate and masters of science in secondary science education from Eastern Michigan University. She is a National Board Certified Science Teacher, member of the Capital Region cohort of the Master Teacher program, a STEM Learning Associate at SUNY Albany, and currently the Environmental Science Subject Area Representative for the Eastern Section of the Science Teacher’s Association of New York State.
Mabey teaches Earth Science, Living Environment, Advanced Placement Environmental Science, Ecology, and SUNY-ESF Global Environment at HFCS. She has served as advisor for Student Council, High School Ski Club, and the Earth Club. Mabey regularly takes students on service learning trips and is taking students to Puerto Rico in 2019.
Mabey was previously selected to participate in the Questar III Summer Science Research Institute and has spent recent summers engaged in the extensive learning experience. The work included conducting investigations at an area research laboratory and offered new perspectives on teaching that Mabey has incorporated in her classroom.
“I am stunned,” stated Mabey when asked about receiving the award. “I am happy and thrilled to be chosen for this honor. I had no idea until they called my name. It was a great surprise.”
“Mrs. Mabey exemplifies what we look for in a teacher in all aspects of her work,” said High School Principal Patrick Dailey. She is an inspiration to our staff and our students. It is a privilege to have her here at Hoosick Falls.”