Alumnus selected as 2022 Teacher of the Year by The Washington Post

Courtesy of Loudoun County Public Schools

Jordan Markwood ’07 was named teacher of the year this year by The Washington Post.

Markwood is President and Chorus Director of the Fine Arts Department at Rock Ridge High School in Loudoun County, Virginia. It sponsors the school’s Music Honor Society, an a cappella club, and musical theater performances.

But it’s his effort beyond the music that makes Markwood stand out. After school had been virtual for so long, Markwood noticed how stressful the return to in-person instruction was for her students.

“Even just having a conversation and maintaining eye contact, or giving positive affirmations to other people was difficult and uncomfortable,” said Markwood, who holds a master’s degree in music in vocal pedagogy and performance. of Westminster Choir College at Rider University. The Washington Post.

To address this, he implemented practices designed to make his students feel comfortable when they return to class, including introducing a gratitude box and bonding exercises.

These changes allowed them to become more sensitive to their peers.

“I feel like the students have been more empathetic to each other because of what they’ve been through,” he said. The Washington Post.

Markwood was chosen from 18 finalists in DC, Maryland and Virginia. The honor comes with a $7,500 prize, a half-page advertisement, a trophy and a profile in The Washington Post.

Earnest L. Veasey