aMAzing Educators

Sontag Prize in Education

The Sontag Prize in Education is an annual award that recognizes and celebrates outstanding educators for their teaching excellence.

All Sontag Prize recipients receive a $3,500 honorarium and first-time recipients receive professional development and an invitation to an awards ceremony.

Educators who are selected for and accept the Sontag Prize expand their impact by committing to teach in an Acceleration Academy, a week-long academic program designed to accelerate student learning through engaging, standards-aligned lessons. During the Acceleration Academies, each content teacher is paired with a small group of students (10–12) for the entire week, and teachers are given the autonomy to design lessons based on their students' specific needs.

Acceleration Academy Dates, Locations, and Content Focus

The following districts will host Acceleration Academies in February (Feb 21 – 25, 2022)

  • Chelsea Public Schools — ELA focus, grades 5–8 and high school
  • Holyoke Public Schools — ELA focus, grades 3–8 and high school
  • Lawrence Public Schools — ELA focus, grades K–8 and high school
  • New Bedford Public Schools — ELA focus, grades 6–8 and high school
  • Springfield Empowerment Zone — ELA and Math focus

The following districts will host Acceleration Academies in April (Apr 18 – 22, 2022)

  • Chelsea Public Schools — Math focus, grades 5–8 and high school
  • Holyoke Public Schools — Math and Science focus, grades 3–8 and high school
  • Lawrence Public Schools — Math and Science focus, grades K–8 and high school
  • New Bedford Public Schools — Math focus, grades 6–8 and high school

Sontag Prize Professional Development and Awards Ceremony

This year's Sontag Prize professional development and awards ceremony event will tentatively take place in the spring or summer of 2022. First-time Sontag Prize recipients will receive additional information in early spring.

Sontag Prize Application

Please complete the application for any district you are interested in teaching in during an Acceleration Academy week.

  • Application for Chelsea Public Schools — This application will be used to select teachers for Chelsea's February and April Acceleration Academies which will serve students in grades 5–8 and high school. Applications for Chelsea's February and April Acceleration Academies are due December 19, 2021. Applicants for Chelsea's Acceleration Academies will be notified of selection decisions by late December or early January.

  • Application for Holyoke Public Schools — This application will be used to select teachers for Holyoke's February and April Acceleration Academies which will serve students in grades 3–8 and high school. Applications for Holyoke's February and April Acceleration Academies are due January 3, 2022. Applicants for Holyoke's Acceleration Academies will be notified of selection decisions by mid-January.

  • Application for Lawrence Public Schools — This application will be used to select teachers for Lawrence's February Acceleration Academies only which will serve students in grades K–8 and high school. Applications for Lawrence's February Acceleration Academies are due December 12, 2021. Applicants for Lawrence's February Acceleration Academies will be notified of selection decisions by late December or early January. An application for Lawrence's April Acceleration Academies will be posted in January.

  • Application for New Bedford Public Schools — This application will be used to select teachers for New Bedford's February Acceleration Academies only which will serve students in grades 6–8 and high school. Applications for New Bedford's February Acceleration Academies are due January 8, 2022. Applicants for New Bedford's February Acceleration Academies will be notified of selection decisions by mid-January. An application for New Bedford's April Acceleration Academies will be posted in January.

  • Application for Springfield Empowerment Zone — This application will be used to select teachers for Springfield Empowerment Zone's February Acceleration Academies.

General Eligibility Requirements

Licensed educators who teach reading and writing, math, science, or specials (physical education, music, art, etc.) can apply. Please see each district's specific application for any additional eligibility requirements or preferred qualifications.

Program Placement

Applicants who are awarded the Sontag Prize will only be placed in an Acceleration Academy program and location in which they have applied.

Questions?

If you have questions about the Sontag Prize and Acceleration Academies, please send an email to CSI@mass.gov and write "Sontag Prize" in the email's subject line.

Last Updated: December 10, 2021

 
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