CARLSBAD — The awards are piling up for one of Carlsbad’s best.
Doug Green, a broadcast journalism teacher at Carlsbad High School and Valley Middle School, was named one of five 2016 California Teachers of the Year on Monday.
Green was recently honored as one of five San Diego County’s teachers of the year, thus propelling him into state consideration.
“It’s sort of surreal,” Green said. “They tell you if you get a phone call from a Sacramento area code, that’s a call you might want step out of class and take. It’s an honor.”
As part of the honor, the longtime educator and his four peers will embark to a formal gala in February. In addition, the five honorees will trek to Japan as part of a diplomacy program where they will stay with a host family and tour Japanese schools.
For Green, though, the honor is more of a tribute to his students rather than himself. Without a dedicated crop of middle and high schoolers, the 25-year teaching vet said none of the adulation would be possible.
“You can’t be a real effective teacher unless you’ve made a connection with your students,” Green added. “I really like to keep the focus on the kids. I feel very fortunate that I have kids who want to be in the class.”
As for his peers, he said the experience has been validating and an honor to represent the more than 400,000 teachers in the state.
“The teachers we are honoring today are dedicated, energetic, innovative and very effective,” said State Schools Chief Tom Torlakson. “Every day in the classroom they inspire students to learn, excel and realize their full potential. Their work provides a great example for other teachers.”
Green, though, lives to teach. He values each day with his students, as “every day is different.”
“We are beyond ecstatic to hear that Mr. Green was selected as a California Teacher of the Year,” said Carlsbad Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Suzette Lovely. “The Internet lit up with congratulatory messages from Mr. Green’s colleagues when the announcement was as made. Doug Green epitomizes all that is right about teaching. He is masterful at bringing out the best in every student and intuitively knows how to take individual talents to the next level.”
One of Green’s journalism students Andrew Ferreira said his mentor works all hours of the day and is an inspiration.
Ferreira, 18, and Julia Keymer, 17, are both seniors and executive producers who started the program as seventh graders at Valley Middle School.
“He is very supportive,” Keymer said. “He has really helped me find my talent, get more comfortable and ask the tough questions. He’s very involved with the CHSTV program. I know getting this award meant a lot to him and this class.”
“He’s honestly one of the hardest workers I’ve known,” Ferreria added. “He finds donations to support the program, so he keeps our program afloat. He’s just an innovator.”
Students prepare for their daily broadcast at 7:30 a.m. From there, the students have more than an hour-and-a-half to get the cameras, graphics, interview subjects and much more on point before the live broadcast at 9:18 a.m.
Once the clock strikes, Green watches intently from the control room as the student director counts down the anchors.
The students then get down to the morning announcements with four to five stories slotted. Of course, stories must be pitched to get on air, although Green, who has never appeared on his creation, shot down any chance of the students getting a live interview.
Nevertheless, Green is excited to speak with his colleagues in the future about his program.
“My platform is media literacy. How do we make sure when the kids get their news from online sources, how do we know they’re news literate? It’s something I’m passionate about.”
The other four winners include Daniel Jocz of Downtown Magnets High School in Los Angeles County, Mitch Bahr of Foothill High School in Palo Cedro, Michelle Cherland of Carrillo Ranch Elementary School in Indio and Ann Park of Greenleaf Elementary School in Oakland.
Steve Puterski covers Carlsbad and Vista. For tips or story ideas, contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @StevePuterski.