Princeton University invites middle and high schools in the State of New Jersey to nominate an exceptional teacher, or team of two co-teachers, for the Distinguished Secondary School Teaching Award. Please click the “Nomination Packet” link at the top or bottom of this page to download the nomination materials.
The Distinguished Secondary School Teaching Award was established in 1959 and each year four honorees are chosen from approximately 75 applicants from public and private schools in New Jersey. These teachers represent the finest secondary teachers in the state and are honored at Princeton University's Commencement. Through the generosity of an anonymous alumnus, each of the prize winners receives $5,000, and the winner’s school receives an additional $3,000 for the purchase of library books.
We invite nominations of exceptional teachers, or a team of two co-teachers, who have demonstrated highly effective engagement with their students in the teaching and learning process, dedicated service to their school and community, and significant commitment to their own professional growth as lifelong learners. In short, we seek nominees whose work has had an especially important influence on the lives of young people and on the school(s) in which they have taught.
The nominee’s major activity must be secondary school classroom teaching (grades 7 – 12), and that person must have at least five years of continuous service in the nominating school or school district. The Committee will look, first and foremost, for concrete examples of the effect of the nominee’s teaching on his/her students, and will also look for specific instances of the nominee’s contributions to the school and the community, as well as consider how the nominee’s achievements reflect his/her philosophy of education.
Please note: We only accept nominations signed by the superintendent, principal, or head of school (we do not accept nominations from teachers themselves). A school that has had a recipient of the award in the last three years is not eligible to submit a nominee, nor should previous prize winners be nominated again.
Princeton takes great pleasure in being able to recognize New Jersey’s outstanding secondary school teachers. We hope you will give this program your active support in your school and we look forward to receiving your nomination.