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Two Whitesboro Teachers Receive Empire State Excellence in Teaching Award

Two Whitesboro Central School District teachers were announced as recipients of the 2022 Empire State Excellence in Teaching Award by Governor Kathy Hochul on June 15.

High school chemistry teacher Stephen Costanza and high school physical education teacher Sara Stamboly-Warner we among the 54 pre-K-12 public school teachers who were recognized for their impressive skillsets as educators and commitment to success for all of their students.

The Empire State Excellence in Teaching Program was created in 2016 to support exemplary teachers across New York state who foster creativity, instill a love of learning and motivate students to maintain high expectations and academic goals, inspire thinking and student initiative. These professionals are eager learners who pursue meaningful professional development throughout their careers. This prestigious award recognizes the dedication, expertise and mission of New York teachers, who demonstrate the excellence seen in classrooms across the State.

“Before, throughout, and as we move past this pandemic, teachers have selflessly shown up for our kids and deserve our immense gratitude,” said Gov. Hochul. “It is impossible to recognize each one for their hard work and effort, but I am pleased to congratulate 54 outstanding educators for their commitment to their students. They embody the values and mindset that every educator should have, and I applaud them for inspiring thousands of children across our great state.”

Costanza and Stamboly-Warner were selected after an extensive application period where several New York State professional education associations were involved in the selection process.

To acknowledge their dedication to student success, Costanza and Stamboly-Warner will each receive a $5,000 stipend distributed by the State University of New York to apply toward professional learning opportunities to continue to develop their knowledge and skills in ways that will further support student growth. They will also be given professional engagement opportunities to share insights on their successful teaching practices, curriculum and instruction, and professional learning. In addition, Costanza and Stamboly-Warner will work with regional developmental leaders, university leaders in teacher education, policymakers and school leaders to advise them on trends in education.

Congratulations on this outstanding accomplishment!