Every year the Prime Minister of Canada gives out excellence awards to exceptional teachers. The annual awards focus on honouring phenomenal educators for the positive ways they teach and help their students.
The recipients of the 2020 awards joined Justin Trudeau for a virtual conversation about education in Canada. The call was live-streamed on Facebook by Canadian Innovation. The page focuses on the opinions of Canadians on how to make Canada a more innovative and inclusive country.
Host Doreen Flynn introduces Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Jean-Yves Duclos – President of the Treasury Board, Ahmed Hussen – Minister of Families, Children, and Social Development, and the recipients of the 2020 Prime Minister Awards. Seventeen educators from all across Canada were chosen for one of three awards. The awards given out include; teaching excellence, teaching excellence in STEM, and teaching excellence in early childhood education.
Justin Trudeau shared his gratitude for all educators, “Today more than ever, I want to take a moment to thank you for your resilience, your compassion, and your devotion. As teachers not only do you constantly keep up with new generations in your classrooms, you keep up with new technologies, new trends, and new ways of seeing the world. Last year when everything suddenly changed, you adapted again. You used your creativity and your perseverance to keep our students connected and motivated. For that, on behalf of parents across the country, I want to say thank you.”
Richard Bernard from River Oaks Public School in Oakville received a Certificate of Excellence for helping students grow in positive ways and teaching them the importance of making decisions ethically. Richard Bernard teaches English, History, Geography, and Art to his grade eight students at River Oaks Public School.
Richard’s advice to aspiring teachers is, “Just have some fun. Be genuine with your students, be honest with them and challenge them. And let them know when they do mess up, it’s okay. I think that’s crazy important for kids to take away from school. For many kids, school is the one safe place. They’re with us for six hours a day, so we have them for a fair amount of time. We need them to be comfortable and genuine, and authentic with us. We want them to want to be there.”
Watch the recorded live stream on Canadian Innovation’s Facebook page.