FSPA recognizes Tesser as District Teacher of the Year

   Florida Scholastic Press Association is an organization dedicated to educate, train and support scholastic journalists and their advisers. Every year, the organization chooses candidates from each of its seven districts to be elected as their districts Teacher of the Year with Broward County representing District 7. The state Teacher of the Year will be announced at the organization’s annual state convention banquet in April.

   For 2021, West Broward TV Production 2 and 3D Animation teacher Jodi Tesser was elected among the other teacher nominees to be District 7’s Teacher of the Year. Being chosen is no easy feat, as students from each school in the district nominate a teacher and the district wide Teacher of the Year is chosen by the FSPA board from the pool of teacher nominations.

   “I honestly was not surprised either,” said sophomore Giancarlo Zarich. “I had a feeling she would win something at districts and I am happy to see her hard work has paid off.”

   Tesser has been teaching at West Broward for the past 10 years, but had been previously teaching  at Park Lakes Elementary School. After teaching second grade there for nine years, Vidal Rivera, fellow West Broward TV production teacher, reached out to her with the prospect of joining the TV program. She accepted and has taught at West Broward since, pursuing her goal of teaching in the technology field.

   “Technology was my dream,” Tesser said. “I have always enjoyed teaching others. Seeing the little ones with their light bulbs going off, I thought, ‘How can I make the light bulb go off for high school students?’”

   Definitely making the lightbulb go off, Tesser’s presence and passion for teaching is felt in and out of the classroom. Her students especially 

   “I love TV Production and I think it might even be something I see pursuing as a career,” Zarich said. “I am very grateful for Ms. Tesser’s teaching because she has helped me learn a lot and feel very involved in the program.”

    The award

   “It was amazing because it was kid nominated,” Tesser said. “That’s all I needed, just the nomination. I didn’t even need the win, the nomination was special in itself.”

HELPING HAND: TV II teacher Jodi Tesser assists freshman Aaorn Vazquez and Andres Mirreles with the class assignment. Tesser won the 2021 District 7 Teacher of the Year for FSPA. Photo by Valentina Padula