DERRY | East Derry Memorial Elementary School teacher Maureen Chamberlain is the town's Teacher of the Year.Last week, the Derry Education Association surprised Chamberlain, a first-grade teacher, with the announcement at the union's spring meeting.
"I'm totally shocked," Chamberlain
said through tears as she
accepted the award and a bouquet of flowers.Chamberlain, a Londonderry resident, realized Streeter was talking about her when she mentioned her work as coordinator of the ski club just before revealing her name.
Before that, she
thought another East Derry teacher was going to receive the award.
Though honored by the award, Chamberlain
said there are "so many unsung heroes who deserve this as much as I do."She
said teachers work hard and are generally not recognized."It should be all of us," Chamberlain
said.One of her children, David, became a teacher and was surprised that the job was "24/7," she recalled.
"It takes a lot of time, but it's worth every minute of it." Throughout her 33 years in education, Chamberlain has worked with the youngest students, including eight years at Nutfield Cooperative School, a private preschool in Derry.After working there, Chamberlain spent three years as a teacher in Windham and has been with the Derry Cooperative School District for the last 22 years.
Chamberlain's husband, Fred, said it was wonderful to see his
wife's work recognized and that the award is "very deserved."The couple have four children and four grandchildren.
East Derry Principal Tom Poliseno said he's
very proud of Chamberlain
, calling her
an excellent teacher who has earned the respect of fellow teachers, students and parents.
plans to pursue her
passion | writing.She
writes poetry and is working on a book.Chamberlain
also loves photography and outdoor activities such as hiking and kayaking.
was named Derry Teacher of the Year on Thursday.She teaches first grade at East Derry Memorial Elementary School.
Allegra Boverman/Staff photo (Click for larger image)