The Student News Site of Tompkins High School

The Nestline

The Student News Site of Tompkins High School

The Nestline

The Student News Site of Tompkins High School

The Nestline

Bearden and Gigliotti Win Teacher of the Year Awards


One of the most prestigious awards given to teachers, Teacher of the Year and Rookie Teacher of the Year, was given this past week today to Social Studies Department Chair Jason Gigliotti and Algebra 1 teacher and assistant JV Girls Basketball coach Alexis Bearden.

Both teachers were happily surprised upon receiving the award. Gigliotti, a recipient of the award in 2012 at the previous school he taught at, expressed even more gratitude for winning the award at Tompkins on account of the excellence of teachers here at this school.

“Winning Teacher of the Year at Tompkins was something that I was not expecting,” said Gigliotti. “Out of all of the amazing teachers here at this school, I feel honored to be recognized.”

Similarly, Bearden also was not expecting to win Rookie Teacher of the Year. Being that this is her first year teaching full-time, she is appreciative to be recognized for her work here so far. She sees this award as not only hers but also the making of all the helpful teaching pointers from her colleagues.

I was teaching my 2nd-period class and a train of administration came walking through my door and my first thought was, ‘It’s not my birthday’ because I saw the flowers Mr. Grisdale was carrying,” said Bearden. “I then thought they were all in my classroom to observe me, but soon heard them say congrats Rookie Teacher of the Year! And I was honestly in shock, I did not even know that was an award I could win, but I was grateful.”

Both Giglotti and Bearden view this award as a validation of their hard work throughout their year of teaching. Gigliotti pushes his AP US History students all year round to earn a minimum of a 3 on their AP exam with a goal of a 5. Bearden balances coaching the JV girl’s basketball team while teaching her Algebra 1 students. 

I love my job and what I do and I think winning this was just a testament to what I do in my classroom and comforting in knowing I really am doing exactly what I feel like I was called to do,” said Bearden. “It means a lot to me to win something so honorable like this.”

Having already celebrated with his family, Gigliotti plans to continue celebrating by attending the Teacher of the Year banquet, which celebrates the Teacher of the Year recipients. Similarly, Bearden celebrated with her family at the Italian restaurant Grimaldi’s Pizzeria. 

Winning this award meant a lot to me and I have enjoyed being able to share with my students why I chose to become a teacher”, said Bearden.

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Sydney Jackson
Sydney Jackson, Editor in Chief The Nestline
As an ambitious high school senior, Sydney Jackson has a great passion for writing. Since the eighth grade, she has loved writing stories on the unique and interesting people and events in our community, and hopes to continue sharing the stories of other after high school as well. Besides writing, Sydney loves to collect vinyl's, read and crochet.

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