UHSSE teachers recognized for outstanding instruction

Note: After this story was published, the Connecticut Council of Language Teachers announced that UHSSE Spanish teacher Richard Incorvati has received the Helen Amaral Scholarship. He will use the award to defray the cost of a summer experience in Argentina.

A few of our teachers at UHSSE have won and been nominated for some teacher awards.

Mrs. Grayeb, who has been teaching at University for 11 years, is a state finalist for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. It is the highest honor bestowed by the United States government for K-12 science, technology, engineering, and math teaching. Up to 108 teachers across the country may be recognized each year. Recipients receive a $10,000 award, a paid trip to Washington, D.C. for professional development opportunities, and a certificate signed by the president.

This was her first job right out of college! She teaches Algebra 2.

She is one of the Math Team coaches as well as an advisor for Pride Club. She is also working with some students to put together a music club!

“It is an honor to be able to represent University and the outstanding teaching that goes on here,” said Mrs. Grayeb. She is one of three math teachers in the state to move forward to the national level.

Mr. Tarantino, who has been teaching for 14 years and is in his 3rd year at UHSSE, has been named the UCONN Early College Experience (ECE) Rookie of the Year for the 2022-2023 academic year. This award is given for excellence in instruction to someone who is teaching in the ECE program for the first time.

He teaches English and an ECE course called Seminar And Studio In Academic Writing And Multimodal Composition.

He runs the literary magazine, the junior class’ student council, and helps run the pride club with Mrs. Grayeb.

“I was very surprised. One of my students nominated me which made me feel very proud. It’s nice to be recognized for doing good work,” said Mr. Tarantino.

Ms. Todisco, who has been teaching here for 10 years, has received the UCONN Early College Experience (ECE) Instructor Award for Excellence in Course Instruction. This award is given to an educator for outstanding classroom instruction in an ECE course.

She teaches English I and University of Connecticut ECE American studies. She is also the senior class advisor.

“I’m honored, I’m humbled. I love that class, the kids make it fantastic to teach. And UCONN allows me to create my own curriculum and teach it the way I’d like it so I’m grateful to have that class and the reward is just the icing on the cake,” said Ms. Todisco.

Mr. Miller, who has been teaching at UHSSE for 8 years, has been voted the University High School Teacher of the Year. He is the chair of the social studies department, head coach for indoor track and baseball,  advisor for newspaper and Black Student Union and member of School Governance Council.

This award, which is voted on by the faculty, is given to a teacher who demonstrates exemplary teaching skills and dedication to the community.

“Winning this award is gratifying because it’s not an award that you apply for or campaign for. We have a lot of outstanding teachers in this building and to be recognized by my colleagues is very meaningful,” said Mr. Miller.

Congratulations to all of these teachers! Make sure to tell them congratulations if you see them around the school!