Each year, City Schools celebrates its great teachers with the Teacher of the Year award. Through a competitive process that includes applications, essays, and recommendations followed by interviews and classroom observations of the finalists, the candidate pool is narrowed until one teacher is surprised by district leaders in the classroom with the announcement of the winner.
Congratulations Sia Kyriakakos, City Schools' 2016 Teacher of the Year, State Teacher of the Year, and Finalist for National Teacher of the Year!
Sia Kyriakakos began her tenure at City Schools as an art educator in 2011 at Baltimore
Civitas Middle/High School. She taught
at Baltimore Talent Development High School in 2013 and arrived at Mergenthaler Vocational-Technical High School the
following school year. Over the course of her teaching career, she has taught
art to students in grades ranging from pre-kindergarten through college.
influence is seen throughout Mergenthaler Vocational-Technical High School, and she is credited with transforming the
halls and cultural environment of the school using student artwork. “When you
look at the quality of the work of our students, it speaks volumes of what she
believes about our students and what they can accomplish given the right
opportunity and instruction,” said Mervo Principal Craig Rivers. "What she does in a semester sends a message that transcends art.”
and staff describe Ms. Kyriakakos as a passionate advocate for education and equity
for all children in their artistic pursuits. Her talents and skills not only bring
the world of art to her students, but she works tirelessly to provide
opportunities for her students to display their talents outside the
classroom.By including her students’
artwork in exhibits across the city, she has highlighted the importance of the arts
in schools.Just recently, Mervo
students received five Congressional awards from participation in Congressman
Elijah E. Cummings’ annual Congressional Art Competition.Two of the five students were also awarded
special nominations from the curators of the Contemporary Museum of Baltimore
and the Visionary Arts Museum.
believe that the impact of the arts spreads through the entire academic
experience of each student.Ms.
Kyriakakos’ dedication to her students and the arts is obviously evident. It is
clear to see that every student that comes into her classroom is pushed to
his/her utmost potential to achieve,” said Congressman Cummings.
students Dasia Gorham credits Ms. Kyriakakos with having a profound impact on her
art and her life.“Ms. Kyriakakos opened
my eyes to see that there are more colors to this canvas called life than just
black, white, and gray.Even after I
graduated from Baltimore Talent Development, Ms. Kyriakakos still goes above
and beyond by keeping in touch and checking to see that I stay engaged with
art.I frequently go up to Mergenthaler
Vocational-Technical High School to relive her class by participating in
projects, helping other students with their work in art class and helping them
see what Ms. Kyriakakos has worked so hard for me to see.”
Kyriakakos holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Maryland Institute
College of Art; a teaching certificate from Central Connecticut State
University and a Masters of Fine Arts from The School of the Art
Institute of Chicago. She also lectures and provides staff development and
leadership training. Her passion for art education and equity was recognized in
Washington, D.C. where she presented her research at TEACH 2016, the American Federation
of Teachers National Conference.