Big Apple Awards

Meet the 2023-2024 Big Apple Award Recipients

2023-2024 Big Apple Award recipients

What are the Big Apple Awards?

The Big Apple Awards recognize and celebrate New York City teachers who:

  • Inspire students to be their best selves, dream, and advocate for their future
  • Model equitable learning with high expectations for the diverse and dynamic needs of all students
  • Affirm students’ identities, unique gifts, and genius
  • Enrich their school communities by partnering with families, community members, and community-based organizations

By honoring these teachers, we recognize all those who go above and beyond to serve our students and families!

During the school year, Big Apple Award winners have the opportunity to participate in the Big Apple Fellowship, which includes engagement in leadership development sessions, professional learning communities, and conversations with the Chancellor.

Nominate a Teacher for the Big Apple Award

It’s a multi-step process that takes many months—and it all starts with you! Students, families, administrators, and community members can all nominate any public school teacher. We then initiate a rigorous selection process that includes multiple stakeholders across the system. Nominations are now closed and will reopen again in at the end of 2024. 

Receiving the Big Apple Award

Recipients are notified of their award in a surprise appearance from the chancellor, deputy chancellors, and other members of the NYC education community. This allows us to honor and celebrate these exceptional teachers in their teaching environment, sometimes even with their students and colleagues! Big Apple Award recipients are celebrated by the Chancellor as well as members of senior leadership and their colleagues across the system. 

Big Apple Award Selection Criteria

The specific criteria used to evaluate Big Apple Award nominees is as follows:

Impact on Student Learning

  • The teacher takes a holistic approach to teaching and learning that affirms and uplifts students’ cultures and communities.
  • The teacher facilitates learning that fosters student-agency and ownership, while creating opportunities for students to co-design curriculum and their learning experiences.
  • The teacher fosters relationships and build trust with students to allow for authentic collaboration in culturally responsive and sustaining ways.
  • The teacher has an asset-based approach and a growth mindset for themselves and their students, empowering their students to succeed in their academic and social lives.

Instructional Practices

  • The teacher uses academically rigorous and intellectually challenging instruction through a variety of teaching methods, creates a warm and welcoming environment in the classroom that actively engages students in learning, and acts as a collaborative teacher by working with others to innovate and hone their practice
  • The teacher establishes trust with colleagues, advocates for students, and allows for true collaboration and equitable instruction.

Contributions to School Community

  • The teacher demonstrates effective leadership in and out of the classroom and shows relentless efforts to build strong family-community ties
  • The teacher builds trust with families and school leaders to become true partners in the school community.
  • The teacher adapts to family, cultural, and community needs, enriching their school communities through partnership with cultural institutions and community-based organizations.

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