Teacher from Narberth’s Welsh Valley Middle School Wins National Award

Photo of Frances Weaver courtesy of Arsenal Mediaworks.

Teaching%20Tolerance77704Frances Weaver, a social studies teacher at Welsh Valley Middle School in Narberth, has been awarded the Southern Poverty Law Center’s 2016 Teaching Tolerance Award for excellence in teaching.

The aim of the biennial award is to recognize classroom teachers who demonstrate teaching practices that help reduce prejudice by improving intergroup relationships and promoting equity in schools.

“For Frances Weaver and her students, the past is the present,” an award official said during the announcement. “An innovative social studies teacher, she creates transformative lesson plans based on current events that ask her students to connect modern moments to moments in history using inquiry and research.”

31c8eb45-4180-4160-baff-3d5f55516d5fWeaver had been named one of 10 finalists in the spring after advancing from a large pool of applicants nationally.

To qualify for the award, she had to show skills in three key areas, including teaching in a diverse environment and using research and innovation to evolve and promote equity both inside and outside the classroom.

“I don’t want my students to feel like I know everything,” said Weaver. “I want us to have a shared dialogue, where we figure it out, where we read multiple sources, where we piece together the different parts of history to make it a whole picture.”

Welsh Valley Middle School is a part of the Lower Merion School District.

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