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Middle school teacher Jared Perry is City Schools 2023 Teacher of the Year

BALTIMORE, MD - Music teacher Jared Perry of Booker T. Washington Middle School for the Arts is Baltimore City Public Schools’ 2023 Teacher of the Year. CEO Sonja Brookins Santelises presented the award this morning during a surprise announcement at the school.

"Our choice of Jared Perry for this year’s City Schools Teacher of the Year will be music to many ears, as Mr. Perry teaches with the belief that all children, whether they have formal music training or not, deserve to know the power of an instrument,” said Dr. Santelises, CEO of Baltimore City Public Schools. “Mr. Perry understands the connection between all other content areas and music and is bringing back musicals and other projects to Booker T. Middle and the surrounding community.

For the past 6 years, students from UMBC have been visiting his classroom to observe him teach to help guide them as future educators. In addition, Mr. Perry works closely with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra's OrchKids program where he is a Brass Teaching Artist, Ensemble Director of the brass band, has led various ensembles, mentored teachers, and more.

Jared Perry began his matriculation at Morgan State University earning an Instrumental Music degree and a Master of Arts in Teaching. He attributes his positive influence as an educator to God, his wife (Danielle), family, friends, colleagues, and the wonderful students and parents that he has met and been blessed by over the years.

During his time at Booker T. Washington Middle, Mr. Perry successfully led his band to the Baltimore City Band Festival for at least 7 years with the highest rating received. Mr. Perry is Booker T. Middle’s Teacher of the Month for December 2022 and in 2015, he received the Yale Distinguished Music Educator recognition for outstanding community partnerships.

“Mr. Perry’s impact on our school community is unmatched. His dedication, consistency, and passion extend beyond his classroom and touches every stakeholder he engages,” said Booker T. Middle School Principal Rashida Ford. “His capacity to nurture and grow our student artists from concrete beginnings is his gift; I can’t think of anyone more deserving of City Schools’ Teacher of the Year!”

City Schools selects the Teacher of the Year through a rigorous, competitive process that involves an extensive review of applications, essays, and recommendations; interviews; and classroom observations. Each finalist also has a personal interview with CEO Santelises.

As City Schools' Teacher of the Year, Mr. Perry will receive a cash award, classroom supplies, and other professional learning resources provided through the Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke Endowment Fund. He will advance to the 2023-24 Maryland State Teacher of the Year competition. The winner of that competition will represent Maryland at the national level.

For more information about the Teacher of the Year award, Mr. Perry, and the other finalists, please visit