Karen Gauthier Anthony Tubbs
SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO — An elementary school teacher who has twice earned National Board Certification and a high school science teacher who also coaches multiple sports have been named two of 15 semifinalists for the 2015 Orange County Teachers of the Year program.
Karen Gauthier, a first-grade teacher at Chaparral Elementary School in Ladera Ranch, and Anthony Tubbs, a science teacher and sports coach at Tesoro High School in Las Flores, received notification of their advancement in the county program on Monday, May 5. As semifinalists, both move forward for oral interviews taking place Friday, May 9, at Orange County Department of Education headquarters.
Finalists for Orange County Teachers of the Year are scheduled to be named Thursday, May 15, with the announcement of four K-12 Teachers of Year and one Teacher of the Year representing community colleges. The K-12 finalists are invited to represent the county in the California Teachers of the Year program.
In March, Gauthier and Tubbs joined Yeon Choi, orchestra teacher at Niguel Hills Middle School in Laguna Niguel, as the CUSD Teachers of the Year from winners at 56 school sites and programs. Their applications were submitted for the county awards program along with 47 candidates from other Orange County school districts.
Gauthier, the elementary CUSD Teacher of the Year, began her career in the District at Oak Grove Elementary School in 1996. She moved to Chaparral in 2001, when she helped open the school. Gauthier earned her first National Board Certification in Early Childhood Education in 2002 and recertified in 2012. She has also served as an adjunct professor at the Pepperdine University Graduate School of Education, where she taught courses in Language Acquisition/Language Arts Methods and Child and Adolescent Literature and Composition.
Tubbs was the high school selection as District Teacher of the Year. He began his career in 1989 as a student teacher and coach in Santa Barbara and served for a year as a teacher and coach in Honduras. He moved to the District in 1996, where he taught science and physical education and coached baseball, football, basketball, and lacrosse. He has also implemented several projects including an aquaponics system, several gardens, engineering contests, and wildlife cameras.
CUSD employs about 2,200 teachers at 56 school sites. They average more than 15 years of experience in education and more than 60 percent have earned graduate degrees. A little more than 40 percent of teachers statewide have a graduate degree.