Maureen Charron-Shea, 7th- through 12th-grade special education teacher at Harwood Union High School was named one of the top three award recipients for National Life Group’s LifeChanger of the Year program for the 2012-13 school year.
Charron-Shea was nominated as a LifeChanger of the Year by colleagues and students at Harwood Union High School, where she serves as a special education teacher for 7th- through 12th-graders. Six years ago, Charron-Shea began a nationally awarded service learning project – Speak Out For Understanding – in which students, educators, parents and community members speak out for social justice, sharing personal stories to promote understanding and tolerance.
She believes public education is becoming the best tool to empower students with disabilities; it is where everyone is valued, both as an individual and a learner. Charron-Shea’s dedication to her students and colleagues and her steadfast determination to advance the fight against discrimination and other social injustices set her apart as a leader who inspires others to follow in her footsteps.
LifeChanger of the Year is a national program sponsored by National Life Group that annually recognizes and rewards K-12 school district educators and employees who make a difference in the lives of students by exemplifying excellence, positive influence and leadership.
LifeChanger of the Year nominees must be full-time educators, teachers, principals, or any member of the school's staff who makes a positive difference in the lives of students. Award winners are selected based on the following criteria:
A proven ability to make a beneficial difference in the lives of students.
An ability to positively add to the development of the school's atmosphere.
A leader in his or her activities at the school and/or district level.
A proven record of excellent performance at the professional level.
A commitment to producing a nurturing atmosphere.
Charron-Shea was chosen by the selection committee out of hundreds of nominees from school districts around the country. As one of this year’s top three winners, she is guaranteed to receive a personal cash award along with a matching donation to her school totaling either $5,000, $7,000 or $10,000. In addition, she will be invited to attend an awards ceremony in Florida on March 8 where the grand prize winner, first runner up and second runner up will be announced.
A surprise announcement at Harwood took place on Monday, February 4, at 12:30 at an all-school assembly.