Ms. Jerome - County Teacher of the Year!

Ms. Jerome - County Teacher of the Year!
Photo: Ms. Leah Jerome, center, surrounded by her students

Congratulations to Pascack Valley Social Studies teacher Ms. Leah Jerome on being recognized as the Bergen County Teacher of the Year!

Ms. Jerome started her tenure with Pascack Valley High School in the Fall of 2011, where she teaches both US History and World History at the Honors and Advanced Placement levels.  In addition to quickly becoming a beloved teacher in the classroom, she immersed herself into the “PV” culture by coaching various sports teams and advising clubs.  Currently, Ms. Jerome is a co-advisor to the One Spirit club, which aims to promote and educate Native American history, preparing students for an annual visit to the reservations of South Dakota including the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe and the Pine Ridge Reservations, where they learn what it means to be Native American in the 21st century.

Photo: Ms. Leah Jerome (center) surrounded by several of her AP World History students in the Spring of 2019
Ms. Leah Jerome (center) surrounded by several of her AP World History students in the Spring of 2019 

When asked what it meant to be the Bergen County Teacher of the Year, Ms. Jerome stated, “It is an honor that I think is not only a reflection of me but of Pascack Valley High School, and that is something that makes me very proud. Joe Orlak, Tom DeMaio, Erik Gundersen, and Barry Bachenheimer have all encouraged me to grow as an educator since I started at PV in 2011. They have always encouraged me to be creative and seek new opportunities.”  

When asked about PV, Ms. Jerome responded, “I have had the three best mentors and role models a history teacher could ask for in Karen Kosch, Ken Sarajian, and Jeff Jasper. I have also had a great mentor in Argine Safari who has demonstrated to me what it means to be a teacher leader. I am surrounded by a wonderful department of history teachers with whom I am proud to associate. The community of incredible and dedicated educators in our district makes Pascack Valley an ideal place to grow as a teacher.”

Photo: Ms. Leah Jerome as she toured the Berlin Wall 
Ms. Leah Jerome touring the Berlin Wall in the summer of 2018

Ms. Jerome earning this achievement makes Pascack Valley Regional the first and only district to have two Bergen County teachers of the year in the last twenty years, as Ms. Argine Safari earned this distinction in 2016.

Regarding her achievement, Pascack Valley Regional High School District Superintendent of Schools Dr. P. Erik Gundersen noted, “We are proud of Leah's compassionate, innovative, and progressive spirit.  I believe it is her work both in an out of the classroom, her dedication to her school and individual students, and her passion for social justice and history, that makes her such an exceptional educator.  As a district, we are fortunate to have a large team of exceptional educators, and we are thrilled that the Governor has recognized Leah as this year's Bergen County Teacher of the Year!”

Photo: (left-to-right) Mr. Thomas DeMaio (Principal), Mrs. Argine Safari (Music Teacher and 2016 Bergen County Teacher of the Year), Ms. Leah Jerome, and Dr. P. Erik Gundersen (Superintendent of Schools)
Photo: (left-to-right) Mr. Thomas DeMaio (Principal), Mrs. Argine Safari (Music Teacher and 2016 Bergen County Teacher of the Year), Ms. Leah Jerome, and Dr. P. Erik Gundersen (Superintendent of Schools) 

In 2013, Ms. Jerome received the James Madison Memorial Foundation Fellowship, leading to her participation in the Georgetown University Summer Institute Program for Constitutional Studies.  Beyond earning her Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science degrees from Fordham University, Ms. Jerome is currently pursuing a Master of Arts and Letters Degree from Drew University and she maintains her Advanced Placement CollegeBoard Teacher Certification.

The Pascack Valley Regional High School District is incredibly proud to have Ms. Jerome as a member of our faculty and we commend her for this outstanding accomplishment.

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