Local Coquitlam educator named as finalist for Premier’s Awards for Excellence in Education

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COQUITLAM – New Democrat MLA Rick Glumac congratulates Maria Bruneau from École Dr. Charles Best Secondary School on being named as a finalist in this year’s Premier’s Awards for Excellence in Education in the Indigenous Education category. Maria Bruneau is one of thirty education professionals throughout B.C. to have been named as finalists, chosen for their leadership, innovation, support and dedication to the students and school community in which they work.

“Teachers play a crucial role in shaping young people into informed and engaged citizens,” said the MLA for Port Moody-Coquitlam. “Congratulations to Maria, it’s clear her commitment to integrating indigenous teachings into her classroom is going a long way to empower and inspire her students.”

Bruneau is known for her dedication to integrating Indigenous teachings into her classroom and school community. She teaches social studies through an Indigenous lens to offer all students deeper understanding and awareness. She also supports local Indigenous students, both in the classroom and out. Last year she took a group to participate in the National Aboriginal Veterans Day ceremony in Vancouver. After being approached by a student, she implemented the district’s first schoolwide Orange Shirt Day assembly in partnership with local groups and she empowered Indigenous students to play leading roles. She is dedicated to the Truth and Reconciliation process and truly recognizes and respects the role the education system plays in that process.

Launched for the first time in 2018, the annual Premier’s Awards for Excellence in Education are an opportunity to recognize the contributions of public, independent and First Nations school system teachers, principals, vice-principals, school and district leaders, and support staff who go above and beyond to make life better for K-12 students in B.C. This year, 10 awards are being given out with six honouring teachers, two recognizing school and district leaders, and two honouring support staff members. The nomination period ran from Jan. 7 to April 30 and 140 nominations were received.

The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony at Government House in Victoria on Oct. 4, the day before World Teachers’ Day.

Winners will receive a $3,000 personal bursary for professional learning, a $2,000 contribution to their school community for professional learning and a commemorative art piece. Runners up will receive a certificate of recognition signed by the Premier and Minister of Education.