In a school year dramatically changed by the coronavirus, teachers have had to go above and beyond for their students. The winner of the 2020 Minnesota Teacher of the Year is no exception.
Congratulations to Echo Park Elementary fourth-grade teacher Qorsho Hassan on being honored with the prestigious award.
In an essay submitted to the Minnesota Teacher of the Year judges, Hassan, a Somali-American educator, wrote, "being aware of the lived experiences of my marginalized students and their communities makes me fight harder to ensure they receive a high quality-education."
“I build strong relationships in order to know every single student as an individual. I challenge systems of oppression such as poverty and racism by demanding more resources for my students and their families. I believe that if students are in a learning space where they feel safe, seen and heard, they will succeed.”
KARE 11 reporter Adrienne Broaddus spoke with Hassan back in March, when she was teaching at Gideon Pond Elementary, about the challenges of adapting to online learning.
"It is about unity and coming together and letting them know we are there for them," she said. "We might be struggling with this. I feel very much at loss not being in my classroom and with my students."
Hassan said her priority during distance learning was making sure her students felt safe, and that they knew she was there for them, even though they couldn't be together in the classroom.
The Minnesota Teacher of the Year is selected by an independent committee representing leaders in education, business and government.