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Draper Park Middle’s Cynthia Krueger and Alta High’s Carina Coria Zapata Earn National Certification

They conquered National Board Certification, and their students are reaping the benefits.

Draper Park Middle math teacher Cynthia Krueger and Carina Coria Zapata, a foreign language teacher at Alta High, recently completed the rigorous process to become National Board Certified teachers, an advanced teaching credential that goes beyond state licensure.

Draper Park Middle’s Cynthia Krueger and Representative Susan Pulsipher.

The voluntary certification, overseen by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS), is the most respected professional credential in education — one takes one to three years to achieve. Krueger and Zapata were recently recognized for their achievement by the Utah State Board of Education, Canyons Board of Education and the Utah Legislature.

They are among just 11 Utah teachers to receive the certification in 2020-2021, and 324 to be certified, to date.

“What a time to be a teacher! Even with the pandemic and other challenges, all Americans should pause to celebrate the new National Board Certified Teachers. They put their teaching to the test, voluntarily challenging themselves, reflecting on their practice and confirming that they are teaching to the highest standards,” said NBCT President and CEO Peggy Brookins in a press statement.

Alta High’s Carina Coria Zapata and Representative Susan Pulsipher.

The certification is a standard that was established for educators by educators. A task force of policy makers, educators, teacher associations and business leaders combined to create NBPTS, and established five core propositions for teaching, which form the basis of the National Board Standards. 

In Utah, teachers are able to receive reimbursement for the costs associated with the certification process. Through a law passed in 2016, known as Utah Legislative House Bill 331, teachers can be compensated pending the availability of state funds and if they meet certain criteria in the certification process. 

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Lucie Chamberlain

Alta View Elementary

If a movie about super teachers were ever made, Lucie Chamberlain would be a prime candidate for a leading role. Fortunately for her kindergarten students at Alta View Elementary, she already thrives in a supporting role for them. Parents thank her for being a “super teacher.” She is also described as an “amazing colleague.” Whether students need help in the classroom or from home while sick, Lucie goes above and beyond to help them learn, overcome fears, and feel important and cared for. Lucie is the reason a number of kids went from hating school to loving it, according to parents. The way she exudes patience, sweetness, positive energy, and love for her students with special needs melts is appreciated and admired. One parent noted: “Both my kids wish she could be their teacher forever.” Another added:  “She treats every student like their learning and their feelings are her priority.” Super teacher, indeed!

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