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M. CRISTINA PERRONE NAMED SOMERSET COUNTY VOCATIONAL & TECHNICAL SCHOOLS EDUCATOR OF THE YEAR

Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School (SCVTHS) is pleased to announce that Ms. M. Cristina Perrone has been selected as the school’s 2023-2024 Educator of the Year. She is known throughout the school community for her passion for her subject, her ability to make classic literature relatable, and her dedication to the growth and well-being of her students. According to Supervisor of Alternative Education Chris Lemongelli, Ms. Perrone “is a dedicated professional who teaches the whole student and has always created an engaging, welcoming, family atmosphere in her classroom for each student that she works with.”

After graduating from St. Peter’s University with a degree in English Literature, Ms. Perrone spent a brief time working in international finance before finding her passion, teaching. She began her 25-year career as an educator at her alma mater, North Plainfield High School. However, for the past twenty-two years, she has taught at SCVTHS primarily as the sole English instructor for the Technical, Occupational Preparation for Success (TOPS) Alternative Education Program for at-risk students. Ms. Perrone also co-created and teaches a Social Emotional Learning (SEL) course at SCVTHS that focuses on providing students with the tools they need to thrive at school, in the workplace, and in life.

Family is very important to Ms. Perrone. She grew up in a bi-lingual home, and her parents made sure that she was aware of the art, music and literature that made up her heritage. She also enjoys traveling and delving into the culture of each country she visits. As a result of these life experiences, Ms. Perrone is able to bring a combination of knowledge, passion for learning, and inquisitiveness to her classroom each day. “I love teaching English, particularly because I feel like I get to teach all the disciplines” she said. “I have a strong background in foreign language, art and music, so I like to incorporate all of those into literature, the study of human stories.” Her hope is that by making these stories relatable to her students she will help them to grow not only as students, but as people.

As a teacher in the TOPS Program, Ms. Perrone works with students who have had difficulties both in and out of school. She not only challenges them academically, but tries to create an environment that is safe and where the students feel respected and empowered. As an outgrowth of her experience with TOPS, Ms. Perrone helped to develop curriculum for a Social Emotional Learning (SEL) course which endeavors to assist students as they develop into socially aware, empathetic members of society. This curriculum aligns with Ms. Perrone’s compassionate nature, and is further evidence of her commitment to her students.

 

Ms. Perrone is a leader of the SCVTHS Social Emotional Learning Committee, and represents the school at the state level as a member of the Social Emotional Learning Alliance for New Jersey.  She also regularly participates in professional development opportunities to cultivate her love of learning and further develop her teaching skills. When she is not engaged in school-related activities, Ms. Perrone enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, visiting museums, attending performing arts, and checking out bookstores.

When asked for her feelings on being named the SCVTHS Educator of the year, Ms. Perrone characteristically spoke about her profession, rather than herself. “I think teachers are amazing people but we’re not in the business of selling ourselves or highlighting what we do or advertising what we do” she said, adding that the award is “a way for others to see this is important. What we do is important”.
M. Cristina Perrone Named Somerset County Vocational & Technical Schools Educator Of The Year

Photo: M. Cristina Perrone, the 2023-2024 Educator of the Year at Somerset County Vocational & Technical Schools


La escuela secundaria técnica y vocacional del condado de Somerset (SCVTHS) se complace en anunciar que la Sra. M. Cristina Perrone ha sido seleccionada como Educadora del año 2023-2024 de la escuela. Es conocida en toda la comunidad escolar por su pasión por su materia, su capacidad para hacer que la literatura clásica sea identificable y su dedicación al crecimiento y bienestar de sus estudiantes. Según el Supervisor de Educación Alternativa Chris Limongelli, la Sra. Perrone “es una profesional dedicada que enseña al estudiante de manera integral y siempre ha creado un ambiente familiar, acogedor y atractivo en su salón de clases para cada estudiante con el que trabaja”.
Después de graduarse en Literatura Inglesa de la Universidad de St. Peter, la Sra. Perrone pasó un breve tiempo trabajando en finanzas internacionales antes de encontrar su pasión: la enseñanza. Comenzó su carrera de 25 años como educadora en su alma mater, North Plainfield High School. Sin embargo, durante los últimos veintidós años, ha enseñado en SCVTHS principalmente como la única instructora de inglés para el Programa de Educación Alternativa Técnica y Ocupacional de Preparación para el Éxito (TOPS) para estudiantes en riesgo. La Sra. Perrone también co-creó e imparte un curso de Aprendizaje Socioemocional (SEL) en SCVTHS que se enfoca en brindar a los estudiantes las herramientas que necesitan para prosperar en la escuela, en el lugar de trabajo y en la vida.
La familia es muy importante para la Sra. Perrone. Creció en un hogar bilingüe y sus padres se aseguraron de que conociera el arte, la música y la literatura que constituían su herencia. También disfruta viajar y profundizar en la cultura de cada país que visita. Como resultado de estas experiencias de vida, la Sra. Perrone puede aportar una combinación de conocimiento, pasión por el aprendizaje y curiosidad a su salón de clases todos los días. “Me encanta enseñar inglés, particularmente porque siento que puedo enseñar todas las disciplinas”, dijo. "Tengo una sólida formación en idiomas extranjeros, arte y música, por lo que me gusta incorporarlos todos a la literatura, el estudio de las historias humanas". Su esperanza es que al hacer que sus estudiantes puedan identificarse con estas historias, los ayudará a crecer no solo como estudiantes, sino también como personas.

Como maestra del Programa TOPS, la Sra. Perrone trabaja con estudiantes que han tenido dificultades tanto dentro como fuera de la escuela. Ella no sólo los desafía académicamente, sino que intenta crear un ambiente seguro y donde los estudiantes se sientan respetados y empoderados. Como resultado de su experiencia con TOPS, la Sra. Perrone ayudó a desarrollar un plan de estudios para un curso de Aprendizaje Socioemocional (SEL) que se esfuerza por ayudar a los estudiantes a medida que se convierten en miembros empáticos y socialmente conscientes de la sociedad. Este plan de estudios se alinea con la naturaleza compasiva de la Sra. Perrone y es una prueba más de su compromiso con sus alumnos.