CLARK — Nicole Parlavecchio, special education teacher at the Frank K. Hehnly School in Clark, was honored on May 13 at a special state-wide ceremony honoring the eight winners of “Innovations in Special Education” Award. The New Jersey School Boards Association hosted the event, which recognized what were designated as the eight most innovative and successful programs currently in operation in special education classrooms throughout the State of New Jersey.
Parlavechhio’s program, “Teaching, Technology, and the Tennessee Titans” is an interactive, intergenerational, mentoring, and skyping program between the third, fourth, and fifth grade special education students and the coaching staff and players of the National Football League’s Tennessee Titans. The program is multi-dimensional, cross-curricular, and is aimed at enhancing student self-esteem, providing students an intergenerational learning experience, and utilizing technology as a vehicle to deliver the grade and subject area curricula.
At the Innovations in Special Education Awards in Princeton, Parlavecchio was presented with a specially engraved plaque honoring her program, presented to her by Assistant Commissioner of Education Barbara Gantwerk. Gantwerk and other officials praised the program as one which was highly motivational and beneficial to students, and one that could be adopted in a variety of educational settings and grade levels.
“Nicole is to be commended for creating such a dynamic, exciting, and interactive program for the students in her charge,” Superintendent of Schools Kenneth Knops remarked. “I have personally attended two of her Skyping sessions and found each to be highly creative and innovative. Without a doubt this is a program that motivates students, enhances the delivery of education, utilizes technology as a vehicle to deliver instruction, and provides students with dynamic role models. The award is richly deserved, and we as a school district applaud her on this impressive accomplishment.”
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