KATONAH, N.Y. -- Katonah pre-Kindergarten teacher Jessica Smith received the national Child Care Teacher award.
Smith, a teacher at Country Children’s Center in Katonah, received a national Child Care Teacher award from the Terri Lynne Lokoff Child Care Foundation held earlier this month in Philadelphia. Smith has been a staff member at the Country Children’s Center’s “White House” location in Katonah for several years and has taught Pre-K for the past four, according to a press release.
The Terri Lynne Lokoff/Children’s TYLENOL National Child Care Teacher Awards are presented annually to child care teachers from across the country and on U.S. military bases and installations around the world.
"Winners are selected based on an educational, age appropriate project they design for their classroom and their demonstration of appropriate child development," according to the release. "Each award recipient receives funds to implement the project plus an individual cash award for themselves."
The award is named for Terri Lynne Lokoff, a "dedicated young teacher who lived only 25 years and whose parents established the foundation in her memory," according to the release.
“We honor outstanding child care teachers each year for excellence and dedication,” a foundation spokesman said in a press release. “We want those in this profession to know that their contribution is incredibly important to children across the country.”
Smith holds a degree from Azusa Pacific University in California and is now working on a Master’s degree in early childhood education.
“I love Pre-K.,” Smith said. “The results are very tangible and you can see progress literally from day to day, I feel that I am making a big impact on my students’ lives that they will carry with them forever.”