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Wyandotte High School educator receives top award for commitment to restorative justice, partnership building

Wyandotte High School educator receives top award for commitment to restorative justice, partnership building

Natalie Johnson-Berry, a dean of students and restorative justice facilitator at Wyandotte High School in Kansas City – and a member of the 2022 Kansas Teacher of the Year Team – recently received one of public education’s highest honors for her commitment to restorative justice and partnership building. 

The NEA Foundation awarded Johnson-Berry the NEA Member Benefits Award for Teaching Excellence, which comes with $25,000, at the NEA Foundation Salute to Excellence in Education Gala, held May 6 at the Anthem Theater in Washington, D.C. 

“Natalie understands the impact of a supportive learning environment on students’ ability to succeed,” said Sara A. Sneed, president and CEO of the NEA Foundation. “Her leadership and commitment to restorative justice and community building has inspired her peers and students and fostered engagement and partnerships within the school community. The NEA Foundation is honored to recognize her achievements with this special award.” 

Johnson-Berry was nominated by the Kansas National Education Association (KNEA). She was one of 45 public school educators selected to be honored with the California Casualty Award for Teaching Excellence. Of the 45 educators, five top educators, including Johnson-Berry, were selected to receive the prestigious Horace Mann Award for Teaching Excellence and $10,000. 

The NEA Foundation is a national philanthropic organization that invests in educators’ leadership, shared learning and collaboration; supports partnerships and initiatives that strengthen public education; and promotes improvement in public education policy and practice, according to www.neafoundation.org

Johnson-Berry has been an educator for nearly 25 years and has worked to facilitate relationships and collaboration throughout her school community addressing a range of issues. She also serves as a member of the Raytown Quality Schools Board of Education. 

“Natalie’s drive to create a safe and welcoming space for teachers and students is unmatched,” the NEA Foundation wrote on its Facebook page. 

To watch the NEA Foundation’s video on Johnson-Berry, visit https://www.neafoundation.org/projects-initiatives/awards-for-teaching-excellence/horace-mann-awardees/. 

Congratulations, Natalie! 

Posted: May 11, 2023,
Comments: 0,
Author: Ann Bush

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