A local educator with strong ties to UFV’s Teacher Education program has won an award from the Association of BC Deans of Education (ABCDE), as a result of a nomination by the TEP department.
The winner of the Education Advocate award for 2013 is Dr. Karen Nelson, Superintendent of Schools, School District #78 (Fraser-Cascade), based in Hope. Nelson has distinguished herself as a strong advocate for all students and their education, with special attention to students of aboriginal background and those with special learning needs. Many of Nelson’s handbooks and strategies for teaching have been recognized by educational partners in B.C. as “best practices.” She has provided strong, consistent support to students, families, and communities, garnering the acclaim of students and families, colleagues, and education partner organizations in B.C.
Nelson was honoured at the annual B.C. Teacher Education Roundtable Conference at Trinity Western University School of Education in Langley. Members of UFV’s Teacher Education program nominated Nelson for the award, partly in recognition of her leadership in aboriginal education and teacher education.
“Recognizing the importance of working with future educators, Karen has always been active in the development and implementation of the UFV Teacher Education program,” the nomination letter noted. “Karen is an active member of the Teacher Education program advisory council, ensuring that the needs of the community are being met by this local program. She also represents the Fraser-Cascade district with her regular attendance at the E-portfolio presentations of student teachers as they complete the program. She provides invaluable feedback to these new teachers as they head into the profession.”
In the area of aboriginal education Nelson, among other initiatives, worked in collaboration with UFV, the Fraser-Cascade district to implement a dual-credit course in Halq’emeylem language (language of the Sto:lo people) in 2009.
“Given her distinguished career, her strong advocacy of students and communities, and her continuing support of teacher education, the faculty at UFV were proud to nominate Karen Nelson for the Education Advocate Award for 2013,” noted UFV instructor Sheryl MacMath. “Karen has tirelessly worked to engage and support diverse community members in education, providing a voice for those who need it most. She is an advocate and example of how education and community can work in synchronicity to ensure a bright future for all those they serve.”