CARE Award Nominees Lead Way in Tech Education

To say 2020 was a difficult year for teachers is an understatement. While all educators have had to overcome a variety of challenges ranging from general safety to maintaining engagement, BSD Education would like to recognize those that have gone above and beyond.

BSD is pleased to announce nominations for the 2021 CARE Awards! These teachers have shown a dedication to their students that goes unmatched and has directly led to success in the classroom by integrating digital skills.

BSD aims to equip students not only with the technical skills to use digital tools but also the moral compass to use them for good. CARE award nominees represent a diverse group of teachers with different backgrounds and experiences. Each exemplifies one or more of BSD’s four foundational characteristics known as CARE: they are curious, adaptable, resilient, and empathetic.

CARE Award winners will be chosen by the public and voting will take place from May 3-14. Meet this year’s CARE Award nominees below, then go cast a vote here.

Curiosity Nominees

Alicia Johal (San Diego Jewish Academy, California, US)
– In 2020, Alicia took the initiative to integrate BSD’s real coding projects with her school’s drive for community outreach and mindfulness. As a result, Alicia is a nominee in the Curiosity category for using BSD Education to integrate digital skills in the classroom while staying true to what her school strives for.

Chelsey Williams (International Community School, Singapore)
– It’s never a dull moment in Chelsey’s classroom due to her curiosity to try new things and provide her students with unique experiences. Chelsey went above and beyond in growing the knowledge and digital skills of her Grade 6 and 8 students throughout 2020 by developing new content and fun activities using BSD’s platform.

Nick Gurol (St. James School, Pennsylvania, US)
While Nick encourages his students to try something new and not be afraid to learn digital skills, as seen with how he uses BSD Education’s platform to integrate coding into the classroom, he also practices what he preaches. Nick has taken significant strides to improve his own coding skills and for this Nick is a worthy nominee in the Curiosity category.

Faizaa Fariya Hridi (Upskill, Bangladesh) – Faizaa invests time in developing her own digital skills, which directly translates to her students and their growth in the classroom. More specifically, Faizaa aims to nurture her students’ web and app development skills, providing them with skills to help them succeed in our growing digital world.

Adaptability Nominees

Meghan Baskerville (Ss. Colman-John Neumann School, Pennsylvania, US) – Teaching digital skills can be daunting for some educators, but Meghan has taken these challenges head on using BSD’s support in 2020. Meghan has embraced several new projects and teaching strategies when implementing coding curriculum, highlighting her ability to adapt to teaching new skills.

Richard Burkhill (The Rugby School, Thailand) – Richard exemplifies adaptability by understanding the needs of his students and acting accordingly. Richard engages his students with creative lessons and supports their creativity by helping them customize their work through BSD, creating an atmosphere for growth in the classroom.

Larisa Curran (South Island School, Hong Kong) – Larisa adapts her lessons to what her students are interested in, increasing engagement throughout the classroom. Being a gamer herself, Larisa uses BSD to bring real-world game development and media into her classroom of Y10 and Y11 students.

Tasha Birtha (Chester Charter Scholars Academy, Pennsylvania, US)
No coding experience, no problem! Tasha started using BSD having no prior coding experience and has now gained the confidence to help her students build their own projects using real code.

Resilience Nominees

Erich Smith (Hopeworks, New Jersey, US) – All teachers were forced to be resilient in 2020, but Erich continuously managed to make tech education a priority during an unconventional year. By encouraging students to customize projects and always push themselves to the next level using BSD’s platform to learn digital skills, Erich’s perseverance makes him a candidate for the Resiliency Award.

Deb Licorish (Haddonfield Middle School, New Jersey, US) – No challenge is too much for Deb, as she takes a hands-on approach to teaching code and reinforcing concepts with her students using BSD. Deb rolls up her sleeves and takes on a brand new curriculum quickly, resulting in a classroom of students with digital skills at their disposal.

Dalia Alhaddad (Modern Knowledge School, Bahrain) – Although Dalia is an art and design teacher by training, she has developed her own coding skills to bring a brand new technology program to her school. Through this new program students will have access to learning new skills that will help them succeed in our digital world.

Shasta Quilala (Good Samaritan College, Philippines) – For more than three years, Shasta has helped her colleagues and students overcome numerous challenges to seamlessly integrate coding and digital skills at Good Samaritan Colleges Philippines using BSD. During the school closures, she ensured that all teachers were always equipped with the necessary tools and skills to help their students succeed.

Empathy Nominees

Vinita Saluja (AIT International School, Thailand) – Using her background in technology and computer science, Vinita has guided and inspired her colleagues to gain the confidence and skills to bring coding in their respective classrooms using BSD. With this kind of support, obtaining digital skills has never been easier.

David Ford (Cornerstone Christian Academy, Pennsylvania, US) – BSD helps any teacher in any subject to integrate digital skills into their curriculum and help their students be ready with 21st Century tools. As an example, David incorporated coding projects into his music class for students to showcase their favorite musicians, their studies of influential African American artists, and quiz each other on music trivia.

Jackie Mandel (Baldi Middle School, Pennsylvania, US) – Being able to customize projects and make it meaningful for students goes a long way to maintaining engagement, and Jackie takes it to another level. She continuously motivated her students to make meaningful connections to their projects and has seen success from initially apprehensive students.

April Jean-Patric (Singapore International School, Hong Kong) – Due to school closures and internet access restrictions, some of April’s students were not able to attend live classes. April went the extra mile to ensure these students were not left behind and gave them all guidance and support during this difficult time for everyone.

about Brent
Brent is the Marketing Manager at BSD. He works on outreach efforts to help educators discover and utilize what BSD offers.
Brent graduated from the University of Oregon in 2009 with a BA in Journalism. He began as a reporter covering the Florida Legislature and state elections. Brent then moved into a marketing role with the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety where he worked as a graphic designer, technical writer, and social media marketer for nearly ten years.

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