April Wilson Named 2023 Teacher of the Year
Posted on 05/18/2022
April Wilson wins Teacher of the Year 2023

6th Grade English and Language Arts Teacher April Wilson is the 2023 Teacher of the Year for East Hartford Public Schools. District leaders surprised Ms. Wilson with the news in her East Hartford Middle School classroom on May 18. She was selected after a rigorous application and interview process, during which Wilson completed a virtual interview on her wedding day! She will represent the school district as an example of what is best in the profession in the statewide Teacher of the Year competition.

A graduate of East Hartford Public Schools herself, Wilson earned her Master’s degree at UConn’s Neag School of Education in 2018 then returned to her hometown of East Hartford to teach.  Since then she has grown from an eager new hire to a leader among colleagues, all the while maintaining the same high level of energy and inspiration.

“April Wilson is an East Hartford story. It’s been a pleasure to watch her grow from student to teacher to Teacher of the Year,” said Superintendent Nathan Quesnel. “The best is yet to come for April, and we appreciate all of her contributions, effort and passion for East Hartford Kids.”

Wilson says her teaching beliefs are grounded in the fact that students are the future, that every child is inherently good, and they are all walking pools of potential.

“Her faith in her students is so raw and honest that they can feel it,” said East Hartford Middle School Principal Anthony Menard. “Ms. Wilson does not offer an easy way out but provides a light and vision for students to see, reach for, and eventual touch on their achievement journey.”

One of Ms. Wilson’s students shared, “She makes sure everyone feels safe and happy, comforts kids when they feel unsafe or sad, and helps kids when they need help with work. I remember the time where someone was being rude to me and they made me cry, Ms. Wilson offered to eat lunch with me in her room and I said yes. She got me to stop crying and made me laugh.”

Wilson is also making a meaningful difference in her school community as a whole through her leadership in the EHMS Diversity and Equity Team. This team presents annual professional development sessions and provides staff with culturally responsive teaching strategies.

“Under the leadership of Ms. Wilson, the Diversity and Equity team has been the most successful teacher-led team that we have ever had in my thirteen years as an administrator,” said Principal Menard.

East Hartford’s Teacher of the Year process begins with nominations from other teachers. Nominees then submit an application, resume and recommendations, and are formally interviewed by the Teacher of the Year committee comprised of former district teachers of the year, Central Office administrators and school principals. Finally, the committee visits the classrooms of its three finalists and selects the overall winner.

The East Hartford Board of Education will formally recognize all building Teachers of the Year in November 2023.