Teacher of the Year Finalists

Four finalists for the 2009-2010 St. Johns County Teacher of the Year have been selected from among 33 nominees. They are Diane Ousley of Landrum Middle School (LMS), Wendy Brogdon of Ponte Vedra-Palm Valley/Rawlings Elementary School (PV-PV/RES), MaryCarol Stearns of Ponte Vedra High School (PVHS) and Chassity Johnson of Sebastian Middle School (SMS).
The teachers all received a surprise visit to their classroom today from Superintendent Joseph Joyner and School Board Chairman Bill Mignon to announce their selection as finalists. The winner, along with the Rookie Teacher of the Year, will be announced at the annual Teacher of the Year Celebration on February 11 at TPC Sawgrass.
Ms. Ousley has been a math teacher at LMS since the school opened in 1991 and is currently serving as the math department chairman. She was also Landrum’s Teacher of the Year in 1995-96. Prior to the opening of LMS, she taught math at Nease Junior-Senior High School. A product of St. Johns County Schools, Ms. Ousley willingly tutors students needing extra help and serves as a team leader and mentor to other teachers.
Wendy Brogdon, a kindergarten teacher at PV-PV/RES, has taught for 20 years, the last 14 of those at her current school. She previously taught kindergarten for three different schools in Duval County. In addition to her classroom responsibilities, Ms. Brogdon has served as the kindergarten team leader for the past three years and as a member of the School Advisory Council (SAC), the Spirit Committee and the Child Study Team.  
MaryCarol Stearns, an English teacher at PVHS, is in her third year of teaching in St. Johns County but has 19 years of teaching experience in California. She has received this honor twice before, as Orange County Teacher of the Year in 2001 and as the Irvine District Teacher of the Year in 2000. In addition to creating an inspiring classroom environment, Ms. Stearns serves as SAC secretary and sponsor of the Pink Ribbon Club and the Creative Writing Club.  
Chassity Johnson, a math teacher at Sebastian Middle School, is also in her third year of teaching in St. Johns County. Her previous experience includes four years at Lakeshore Middle School in Duval County where she was named Rookie Teacher of the Year. She serves as the school’s eSIS Teacher Assistant co-trainer, Fall Festival co-chairman and Bible Club sponsor.
The annual awards banquet is sponsored by the St. Johns County Education Foundation to recognize excellence in the teaching profession.