2016 Teacher of the Year

Katherine ShawKatherine Shaw of Washington Elementary in Bellflower was awarded The Milken Educator Award.

The Milken Educator Award is presented once per year over the course of three months. It is a National recognition and is known as the “Oscar” or Grammy” of education. The award recognizes the Top 1% of educators in the US (over 3 million educators).

Katherine Shaw holds Washington Elementary's youngest students to the highest standards.

Shaw's own experience as an English Language Learner heightens her focus on the needs of her students. Her classroom is a hub of nonstop activity with Shaw using a variety of techniques to engage her students and make content come to life.

With Shaw's unwavering support, her students thrive. On the Basic Phonics Skills Tests (BPST), virtually all of Shaw's students show mastery at or above grade level in phonemes and phonics. Shaw maintains students' interest in reading by creating a "print-rich" environment in her classroom.

Her passion for education transcends the classroom walls as well. A firm believer that teachers are lifelong learners, Shaw regularly researches best practices to share within her school and district.

Shaw mentors Washington Elementary teachers at all grade levels, and as a Beginning Teacher Support and Assessment (BTSA) program mentor, she works closely with first-year teachers to help them adjust and overcome challenges. Shaw brings parents into the school community by forging relationships, welcoming them into her classroom, and sharing instructional strategies so they can reinforce concepts with their children at home. Her instruction has made an indelible impact on students. Shaw earned a Bachelor of Arts in liberal studies from California State University, Long Beach, in 2000 and a Master of Arts in teaching with a specialization in reading from National University in 2007.