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Nominations for the 2007 Governor's Marine & Aquatic Science Teacher of the Year Award are now being accepted. This year, nominees must be Delaware K-6 teachers who place special emphasis on educating students about the wonders of Delaware's wetland, watershed, estuarine, coastal and/or ocean resources.

The Delaware Sea Grant College Program, in partnership with the Office of the Governor, established the Governor's Marine & Aquatic Science Teacher of the Year Award in 2001. The goal of the award is to recognize, on an annual basis, an outstanding Delaware teacher who has a strong commitment to marine and aquatic science education.

The winning teacher will be selected based on creativity and innovation of teaching methods, quality of instruction and impact of activities presented to students. A committee knowledgeable about state science education standards, teacher performance and impact in the classroom will review the nomination packages and determine the winner.

The winner will receive an all-expense-paid trip to either the National Marine Educators Association annual conference or to the National Science Education Teachers Association annual convention. The National Marine Educators Association conference, the largest assembly of marine and aquatic science educators in the world, will be held this summer in Portland, Maine. The National Science Education Teachers Association convention, the largest meeting of science teachers in the United States, will be held March 2008 in Boston.

The winning teacher also will be recognized at Coast Day, the annual open house of the UD College of Marine and Earth Studies and Delaware Sea Grant College Program, and will have the opportunity to share project ideas and teaching techniques through hands-on activities or exhibits. Additionally, a press release will be issued statewide to recognize the honoree. The teacher's name and school also will be recorded on plaques that will reside in the Governor's Office and at the UD College of Marine and Earth Studies.

Hepsi Zsoldos, an eighth-grade earth science teacher at Talley Middle School in Wilmington, was the first recipient of the award in 2002. Last year, Conrad Rice, a high school science teacher at the Charter School of Wilmington, won the prestigious award.

“The award is a wonderful honor,” Rice said. “I'm glad that I'm able to draw some extra attention to the work that my students have done and to the program at the Charter School of Wilmington.”

Teachers may be nominated by an individual knowledgeable about their commitment to educating students about marine and aquatic resources. Self-nominations also are acceptable. The official nomination form may be downloaded from the Delaware Sea Grant Web site at []. Completed nomination forms must be postmarked no later than Monday, April 23.

For more information, contact William Hall, marine education specialist for the Delaware Sea Grant Marine Advisory Service, at (302) 645-4253 or via e-mail at [].

Media contact: Ronald Ohrel, (302) 831-0566, []
February 26, 2007