"We are delighted that a number of teachers from districts implementing the TAP System are participating in the White House teacher recognition event this year," said Dr. Gary Stark, NIET’s chief executive officer. "Erica Castillo and the other TAP educators at the event are working in their schools and districts, but also at the state and national level, to promote the teaching profession and highlight the importance of strong classroom instruction for student achievement."
"Being a teacher is an extraordinary job that is difficult and too often overlooked. So having our time, sacrifices and understanding appreciated by the President of the United States of America was special and an experience that I will never forget," said Castillo. "The encouragement to continue my life’s work as a teacher is not something I needed or expected. Yet the words spoken by the President yesterday confirmed that my heart and teaching style are what our students in today's society need to experience success and motivate them to work hard to achieve their goals and dreams."
Castillo has been teaching seventh- and eighth-grade math for a decade, both as a classroom teacher and now a TAP Master Teacher. She served as a mentor during the years Savannah Heights Intermediate was implementing the TAP System. An energetic teacher who connects well with students, Castillo won the KENS-5 Excel Teacher Award. The Somerset ISD has shown significant student achievement growth and doubled its teacher retention rate after participating in a TIF grant that enabled the district to institute a new teacher leadership structure, a new teacher evaluation system, embedded professional development delivered by teacher leaders, and performance-based compensation system.
For more information on NIET and the TAP System, visit http://www.niet.org.
Based on the knowledge and experience gained from over a decade of on-the-ground implementation with TAP, combined with the growing demand for proven reforms in teacher and principal effectiveness, NIET supports schools, districts, universities and states with educator evaluation training, evaluator certification modules linked to learning platforms and human capital management systems as well as tools and resources for educator preparation.