by Mark DiMaio
Virginia “Jinni” Forcucci, a high school English teacher from the Sussex Technical School District, is Delaware’s 2018 State Teacher of the Year. Governor John Carney made the announcement at the annual banquet honoring the 20 district and charter teachers of the year at Dover Downs Hotel and Conference Center.
Virginia “Jinni” Forcucci became an educator because of her love of literature, but her students are the inspiration for her 20-year career. As a teacher, Forcucci works to encourage her students to understand all sides of an argument before formulating a perspective, and to seek common ground as they search for a resolution. Ms. Forcucci said she found what best motivates learning is demanding content, freedom to explore and academic discourse. With this discovery, she redesigned her curricula, enhancing rigor and relying more on student-driven discussions. Even her most resistant learners responded.
Ms. Forcucci inherits from outgoing Teacher of the Year Wendy Turner the responsibility of representing all Delaware teachers. She will also represent Delaware in the National Teacher of the Year Program, a project of the Council of Chief State School Officers. By action of the Delaware General Assembly, she will receive a $5,000 grant to use for the educational benefit of her students, as well two personal grants totaling an additional $5,000.
James DeChene is the Chamber's Senior Vice President of Government Affairs.