2019 Teacher of the Year:

Valerie Bruce

Rozet Elementary School
Subject Area
Grade Level
More about Valerie Bruce

Inspired by her grandmother who taught for 42 years, Valerie Bruce knew from a young age that she wanted to be a teacher. With the purpose of helping others learn, sharing curiosities, igniting passions, and aiding children in finding their futures, Bruce began her pursuit at the University of Montana-Missoula. She graduated in May 2009, with a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education and began teaching first grade in Campbell County School District #1 in July 2009. She then pursued her Masters in Educational Administration from Chadron State College-Nebraska, graduating in May 2017.

Bruce is an enthusiastic educator, champion for students, and a lifelong learner who places relationships as a top priority. Bruce makes sure to greet every student outside the door with a smile and a genuine “How are you?” followed by a warm “I’m so glad to see you today!” Bruce attends extra-curricular activities of students and believes seeing students during soccer, gymnastics, football, karate, rodeos, and wrestling positively impacts student-teacher relationships and strengthens the parent-school connection immensely.

Goal setting and celebrating student growth are an everyday occurrence in Bruce’s carefully cultivated classroom community built on trust, hard work, and a growth mindset. She believes every student can grow, achieve at high levels, and nurturing student belief in themselves is her daily goal. Valerie focuses on fostering a love of reading, inspiring the craft of writing, and thinking about your thinking. Students refer to themselves as readers, writers, mathematicians, scientists, thinkers, and friends who identify as a group of learners working toward individual goals.

National Teacher of the Year Sponsors

A special thank you to all of our wonderful sponsors who help make the NTOY program possible. If you are interested in supporting the program, click here to learn more.

Program Partners