FREDERICTON (CNB) – Five teachers in the francophone sector received Teaching Excellence Awards for their daily efforts during the 2010-11 school year to help their students succeed academically and build their identities. The ceremony was held in Fredericton on Saturday, Nov. 5.

Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Jody Carr attended the 18th annual ceremony and presented the following awards:

●    Cindy Roy (École Amirault, Dieppe – School District 1);
●    Isabelle Thériault-Thibeault (École Mgr-Martin, Saint-Quentin – School District 3);
●    Monique Chiasson (École secondaire Népisiguit, Bathurst – School District 5);
●    Gilles Paulin (Centre scolaire-communautaire La Fontaine, Neguac – School District 9); and
●    Renée LeBlanc (École Soleil Levant, Richibucto – School District 11).

“This evening is a special opportunity to commend these members of the teaching staff who are the pride of our education system,” Carr said. “These teachers successfully pass on to their students the desire to excel; contribute to the building of their self-confidence; and help them acquire the knowledge and skills that are essential in today’s world.”

Carr also acknowledged the daily efforts of all teaching staff and partners in education.

“It is essential to recognize individuals who stand out in their profession and in the minds of their students,” he said. “This celebration of excellence reminds us how much of an impact a teacher can have on student learning. It also reminds us that it is often because of the constant efforts and continued co-operation of all the partners in education that we can offer our children the best possible education system.”

The Teaching Excellence Award, established in 1992, has been presented to 147 teachers who have shown outstanding creativity, dynamism and dedication.

Background information on the award recipients

Cindy Roy (École Amirault, Dieppe – School District 1)

Roy is known for being innovative and going beyond the confines of the classroom. She has numerous qualities that she has been able to foster at her school, in the school district, and at the provincial level.

As a kindergarten teacher, she prefers to teach through play and spontaneous activity. In her class, the children express themselves, experiment and build on their knowledge. They learn to be themselves and to be valued through differentiation and multiple intelligence activities as well as various projects. She helps all of her students develop their full potential.

Passionate about reading and writing, she publishes books with her students. They were given the opportunity to participate in a community book fair and win a prize in the national contest of the Association canadienne d'éducation de langue française (Canadian education association of the French language).    

It should be noted that Roy is a teacher who has made more than a positive impression on the children; she has given them a gift that will help them continue on the path to creativity, sharing, and discovery, a path that leads to meaningful achievements and where all dreams are encouraged.

Isabelle Thériault-Thibeault (École Mgr-Martin, Saint-Quentin – School District 3)

Thériault-Thibault is a remarkable educator. To meet all of her students' needs, she uses differentiated learning to match the learning style and pace of each child.  

In her opinion, evaluation must be used to help people learn. It allows her students to experience success and identify the strengths and challenges that they need to work on to be more successful the next time.  

Her Grade 6 class is a respectful environment that fosters learning and co-operation. Co-operation and humour are combined in such a way that the children feel good and are encouraged to take risks without the fear of judgment or intimidation by their peers. She has opened her door to gifted Grade 5 students to give them higher level enriching experiences.   

Thériault-Thibault is an involved, dynamic teacher. In the classroom, she ensures that her students are comfortable and feel loved. Teachers at the school recognize her expertise and do not hesitate to call on her for advice on strategies used in the classroom or French language instruction.

Monique Chiasson (École secondaire Népisiguit, Bathurst – School District 5)

Chiasson is an innovative teacher who is not afraid to establish a human relationship with her students. The student is always the focus of her teaching practices. Chiasson is the perfect example of an educator who has the courage of her convictions and a passion for the profession.    

Committed to all of the people in her life, she is a dedicated mother, a teacher who is involved in all aspects of the profession, and a dynamic colleague who knows how to rally the people around her.

That she is so approachable and capable of establishing a relationship of trust with young people means that she and her students have good times together. Her positivity is contagious, but she also knows how to translate her educational intentions into fruitful actions.

Her involvement extends to the national level. She serves on a committee of the Canadian Teachers' Federation, working on high school teaching in a minority setting.

Chiasson may be described as an experienced teacher and considerate educator who uses a personalized approach for each student. In addition to being an accomplished teacher, she gives young people hope, an essential skill for academic success in today's world.

Gilles Paulin (Centre scolaire-communautaire La Fontaine, Neguac – School District 9)

It is hard to describe Paulin's effervescence. Passionate about history and culture, he is a storyteller and a uniting force, and education and knowledge course through his veins. He has fully embraced the concept of transmitter of culture (passeur culturel), and with him, everything is detailed, exciting, and memorable.   

Paulin has a talent for adapting and modernizing his teachings. He has worked on many projects, both as an initiator and a collaborator, and year after year, he has been involved in countless committees and activities related to the teaching profession.   

He gets his students engaged in their learning and passes on his love of social studies. There have been countless organized trips to the Village Historique Acadien, Parliament Hill in Ottawa and the legislative assembly in Fredericton. He encourages his students to participate in seminars and serve on committees to give them the opportunity to consolidate their learning and develop their leadership skills.

His commitment to education is undeniable. He offers his time and is actively involved in various professional and social activities, at the local and provincial levels.

Renée LeBlanc (École Soleil Levant, Richibucto – School District 11)

For the past six years, LeBlanc has taught Grade 8 at the Soleil Levant community school. As an educator who is dedicated to her students' education, she takes inspiration from new trends in teaching methods to meet the needs of her students.  

LeBlanc started a business-themed project in her class called On n'est pas des pros (we are not pros). This project, which incorporates all school subjects, is also her main tool for classroom management. From the start of the year, she runs her class similar to a business. All of the students in the class are given a job and must perform specific duties. LeBlanc makes the connection between the business project and several of the Grade 8 curriculum learning outcomes.

She helps her students develop and acquire skills, strengths, and the qualities needed to make their way and be successful in life. Her students benefit from sustainable learning and enjoy academic success. The students learn to be responsible through the business model and the values that it instils.

LeBlanc is also involved in sports and social activities at the school. She has coached the cross-country team for the past five years and serves on several committees.