Every year at the annual conference, the Florida Council for the Social Studies gives out a number of awards that recognize excellence in social studies education and service to the social studies community. I just want to take a few minutes and provide you with an overview of those awards. I hope that you will consider registering for the conference and attending the awards banquet in order to help recognize your colleagues!

We are excited also to welcome Dr. Gwendolyn Zoharah Simmons as the keynote speaker at dinner! Dr. Simmons has been proclaimed as an original Black Power feminist and a grassroots leader of the Mississippi Freedom Summer. Dr. Simmons will present her experience and role in Freedom Summer ’64 working to build schools, libraries and registering voters in black communities in the Mississippi Delta as part of the Civil Rights Movement. She will reflect on how these experiences were the start of a life of…“Putting communal goals before individual goals.”

The Doctor Theron Trimble Florida Teacher of the Year Award is to recognize exceptional social studies teachers for grades K-6, 5-8, and 7-12, and to encourage participation in the NCSS Teacher of the Year program at the national level. Nominees must be a former or current district-nominated FCSS Teacher of the Year, and a current member of FCSS. Nominees may apply in only one category (teaching social studies regularly and systematically in elementary settings, and at least half time in middle/junior high and
high school settings).

The Harry Tyson Moore Award is named after a teacher who championed the advancement of civil rights in Florida. Founder of the first branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in Brevard County, Moore and his wife, Harriet Vyda Simms Moore, paid the ultimate price for their activism when their house was bombed on Christmas night, 1951. In sponsoring this award, Nystrom Education hopes to inspire future generations of Florida’s students to civic action with the story of Harry T. Moore, who declared, “Freedom never descends upon a people. It is always bought with a price.”

The Gilder-Lehrman Institute of American History awards the Florida American History Teacher of the Year in conjunction with the Florida Department of Education annually in its effort to promote the study and love of American history.

The Doyle Casteel Outstanding Leadership Award is given to an individual for his/her continuous leadership in a supervisory or administrative capacity. Their leadership in FCSS has promoted cross cultural understanding, mentoring of classroom teachers, and advocating the importance of social studies education. This award is sponsored by McGraw Hill Education.

The Warren Tracy Beginning Teacher of the Year Award, sponsored by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, is to recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of social studies teachers new to the field of education, who engage students in meaningful lessons to increase student awareness, who are involved with school/ community activities, and who are leaders on behalf of education.

The Outstanding Citizen Award recognizes an individual in the state of Florida who has done the most to promote the growth of social studies throughout the State.

The Excellence in Teaching History Award, sponsored by Pearson Education, is to recognize and celebrate a Florida teacher of history who encourages an appreciation and respect for history, involves students in the historical process, and evidences mastery of the subject matter.

The Agnes Crabtree International Relations Award recognizes the FCSS member who has, through teaching, research or community activities furthered the cause of international, intercultural relations. It is given in honor of Agnes Crabtree, a Miami-Dade teacher. Agnes was active in NCSS and FCSS, and the United Nations Association, serving as NEA international relations consultant.

The B. J. Allen Social Science Professional Award is given to an outstanding FCSS educator who has served the professional organization in a comprehensive way. The award honors service to FCSS and to social studies during the year or years immediately past. Dr. B.J. Allen, Florida State University Professor, and President of the organization.

The J.R. Skretting Leadership Award honors an outstanding FCSS educator who has served with distinction during the year or years immediately past. J. R. Skretting was head of the Social Studies Education Department at Florida State University, the first Executive Secretary of FCSS and provided outstanding leadership for the organization.

The Wilma Simmons Golden Service Award recognizes a member who has been active for many years and has made significant and lasting contributions to the council. Wilma Simmons, former Social Studies Supervisor in Duval County, was one of the original founders of FCSS.

awards-sponsorsWe hope that you will join us to recognize the winners of these and the district Outstanding Teachers of the Year that will also be brought on stage! Register now for FCSS!