Monarch Global Academy Teacher Named as a Finalist for Maryland Teacher of the Year

First charter or contract school teacher to be a finalist

LAUREL, Md.—Monarch Global Academy Public Contract School’s Heather Carnaghan, who serves as a middle school project-based learning instructional guide, was named one of seven finalists for the 2018-2019 Maryland Teacher of the Year by the Maryland State Department of Education. Carnaghan was the first charter or contract school teacher to win the Anne Arundel County Public Schools Teacher of the Year award and now is the first charter or contract school teacher to be a finalist for Maryland Teacher of the Year.

 “Heather is a remarkable educator who truly exemplifies a strong passion for teaching that inspires all of us. Heather’s work in curriculum development and project-based learning, through the Transformation Education model and focusing on the whole child, is a strong example of the unique approach that Monarch Academy schools have brought to Maryland,” said Andrew L. Ross, president and CEO of TranZed Alliance, which operates Monarch Global Academy.

 Carnaghan has more than 13 years of experience in the classroom and prides herself on the work she does mentoring students and building a great sense of community at Monarch Global Academy. This school year, she is supporting teachers in implementing project-based learning through co-teaching and collaboratively writing curriculum in the middle school. She also serves on the school’s leadership team, leads the hiring team and coordinates the school-wide Advancement Via Individual Determination program, designed to help students develop skills for college and career readiness.

 “I am excited to have a platform to share the innovative practice that charter and contract schools bring to the table,” Carnaghan said.

Carnaghan is starting her fifth year at Monarch Global Academy. Carnaghan has taught kindergarten, third, seventh and eighth grades. Previously, she taught second and fifth grades at Monarch Academy in Glen Burnie. She began her career teaching in a Title I school in Prince George’s County and also taught in a charter school in Lowell, Massachusetts.

 Carnaghan is a National Board Certified and Renewed Teacher. She holds an Administrator I certification from McDaniel College, a master’s degree in teaching reading from Loyola University and a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from West Virginia Wesleyan College. She is currently pursuing a doctorate in educational leadership through the University of Maryland.

 “We at Monarch Global Academy are incredibly proud of Heather as an educator and state finalist,” Monarch Global Academy Principal Donna O’Shea said. “Heather is organized, communicates clearly with a definitive knowledge of education, and approaches her responsibilities with enthusiasm. She is a very talented and skilled individual.”

 The 2018-2019 Maryland Teacher of the Year will be announced on Oct. 12, 2018.

 Monarch Global Academy, an affiliate of the TranZed Alliance, is a public contract school in Laurel, Maryland, for children in kindergarten through eighth grade, operating under the Transformation Education philosophy that infuses a school’s beliefs and values into the look of the school building, instructional approach, teachers’ mindset and behavior and operating systems. Monarch Global Academy is an International Baccalaureate school, emphasizing transdisciplinary learning and international-mindedness. In addition, the school offers an information technology curriculum. (