Jamaican teacher makes elite list of Global Teacher Prize finalists

first_imgTracy-Ann Hall When Tracy-Ann Hall was going through high school none of her peers or teachers would harbor the thought that she would be an outstanding educator.Hall’s school years were difficult as she was afflicted with undiagnosed dyslexia and never matriculated to tertiary education immediately after graduating from high school.Instead she trained as an automotive technician and worked in a garage. But driven by a fierce will to succeed, the young woman sought to qualify herself further and entered into teachers college where she graduated top of her class after a three-year course..This was would prove to be her best roll of the dice.Hall now teaches an automotive technology class at the Jonathan grant high School and her love for the classroom and her undying passion to see her students succeed has borne fruit.Hall has been nominated as one of the 10 finalists for the Varkey Foundation Global Teacher award for 2017. She was selected from a pool of 20,000 nominations and applications from 179 countries..Now in its third year, the US $1 million award is the largest prize of its kind, and was implemented to recognize an exceptional teacher who has made an outstanding contribution to the teaching profession as well as magnify the important role teachers play in the world.The winner will be announced at the Global Education and Skills Forum in Dubai on Sunday, March 19.Hall’s firsdt classroom experience was one that most teachers would dread. She was assigned to a class of young males who were written off as below average with poor literacy skills.However, she was not daunted and motivated the class of 30 boys. She established a class library, encouraged her charges to read and deliver a book review on completion of each volume.Soon the students began to excel in grade ten and by grade 11 were so transformed that eight of them joined the school choir and one became head boy at the school. Her class was also the first automotive exam class to score a 95 percent pass in the history of the school. She also started and oversaw a programme for her class to feed street people, launch a junior automotive club and serve on the school magazine committee.Her students have taken on careers as policemen, scuba divers, hotel managers, chefs, and, without a doubt, automotive technicians. Hall has never wavered in encouraging all her students to get enrolled in a tertiary institution.Tracy-Ann Hall has taught at various schools, all with the same success. She has convinced business leaders in the automotive sector to sponsor scholarships for exceptional students, ensuring they start with a firm foothold in the industry. With resources scarce, she has been ingenious in finding materials and components for her automotive classes, which are difficult to attract funding for, again forming partnerships with those in the automotive sector to use their facilities and spare parts. She has hosted summer schools for low-income families, bolstering her community. Her contribution has been recognised with a number of awards from the schools she has taught at.The other nine finalists for the Global Teacher prize 2017 are:Raymond Chambers, a computer science teacher from Brooke Weston Academy in Corby, NorthamptonshireSalima Begum, Headteacher at Elementary College for Women Gilgit, PakistanDavid Calle, from Madrid, Spain, the founder and creator of the Unicoos educational websiteWemerson da Silva Nogueira, a science teacher at the Escola Antônio dos Santos Neves in Boa Esperança, BrazilMarie-Christine Ghanbari Jahromi, a physical education, maths and German teacher at Gesamtschule Gescher school, in Gescher, GermanyMaggie MacDonnell, a teacher at Ikusik School, Kativik School Board, Canadian ArcticKen Silburn, a science teacher at Casula High School, south-west Sydney, AustraliaYang Boya, a psychology teacher at The Affiliated Middle School of Kunming Teachers College, ChinaMichael Wamaya, a dance teacher from Mathare, Nairobi, Kenya.last_img read more