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Antoinette Dempsey-Waters Named Mount Vernon’s 2019 History Teacher of the Year

MOUNT VERNON, VA – George Washington’s Mount Vernon has named Antoinette Dempsey-Waters, a history teacher at Wakefield High School in Arlington, Virginia, as its 2019 History Teacher of the Year. Dempsey-Waters will receive a $5,000 prize and an all-expense paid trip to George Washington’s Mount Vernon for up to 100 students and 10 chaperones. Now in its 12th year, this special award celebrates educators dedicated and passionate about teaching history.

“It is a privilege to get a glimpse inside Antoinette Dempsey-Waters’ classroom.  One of our reviewers expressed a desire to return to high school, just to have the opportunity to be her student” said Allison Wickens, Mount Vernon’s Vice President for Education. “She is committed to ensuring her students’ success in learning from primary sources and on tough topics in history.  Her commitment goes beyond the students in her classroom, but her curriculum development work will impact students across Arlington.”

Dempsey-Waters has 15 years’ experience as a history teacher and currently teaches AP United States History, Economics and Personal Finance, and African American Studies at Wakefield High School. She wrote the curriculum and implemented the African American History course which is currently offered at Wakefield High School and will be offered at all Arlington County Public Schools in in the 2020-2021 school year.

A colleague wrote of Dempsey-Waters work: “Antoinette knows how to reflect on and learn from the past in order to change the future. She relished the “ah-ha” moments of her students when they are finally able to connect the dots in their learning, to go into the world and use their historical knowledge to understand the present.”

Mount Vernon has selected Jenifer Hitchcock, an AP Government and US History teacher at Fairfax High School, as its runner up for the History Teacher of the Year award. Hitchcock will receive tickets to George Washington’s Mount Vernon for up to 50 students and five chaperones.

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