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Diman Principal Receives National Miken Educator Award for Excellence

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At the Milken Educator Award presentation at Diman on Friday from left, Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary
At the Milken Educator Award presentation at Diman on Friday from left, Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Educator Effectiveness Program Coordinator Grace Kingsbery; Helene Bettencourt, associate commissioner of communication and planning for the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education; Diman Supt. Brian Bentley, Principal Andrew Rebello, Massachusetts Elementary and Secondary Education Commissioner Jeffrey C. Riley; Milken Educator Awards Senior Vice President Dr. Jane Foley and DESE Chief of Staff Iraida Alvarez hold the big check that comes with the award. Photo courtesy the Fall River Herald News photographer Colin Furze.

During a surprise announcement, Diman Assistant Superintendent and Principal Andrew Rebello received of the Milken Family Foundation’s National Milken Educator Award on Friday morning. The national award recognizes an educator’s excellence with a $25,000 award

“Incredibly surprised. I hear my name, and it’s immediately overwhelmed, then it becomes gratitude for this incredible recognition for the students and teachers.” said Diman Principal Andrew Rebello.

The school community gathered in the Gymnasium Friday morning for a surprise meeting with the Massachusetts Education Commissioner, Jeffrey, school officials and members of the Milkin Family Foundation. The meaning of the meeting remained a mystery, and no one knew what was about to happen.

“I keep hearing about one school over and over, and I’m here today. I always hear about Diman.” Said Massachusetts Education Secretary Jeffrey Riley. “People are talking about Diman all across the state.”

Joining the commissioner, the Milken Family Foundation Senior Vice President Jane Foley. Dr. Foley traveled from Santa Monica, California, to be at Diman for the surprise presentation of the award.

Dr. Foley told the group, “The foundation knows about you! Even in California, we heard great things about your school.” Dr. Foley added “Greatness in education should be recognized too. Outstanding educators are the backbone of school communities.”

Students played a math game, revealing the $25,000 award, and the crowd brimmed with excitement as to who might receive the award. The assembly burst with cheers when Principal Andrew Rebellow was named the recipient.

“The news was great! I really think Mr. Rebello deserved that award.I’m pretty sure everyone of my classmates would agree.” said one Junior Diman student.

Rebello added “It’s reassurance that Diman is providing what this community what it needs. That it’s a world class institution that’s provides life-ready graduates. “

Rebello will join other national award recipients in Los Angeles for a formal ceremony later this year. 

About the Milken Family Foundation

Film has the Oscar™, music has the Grammy™, science has the Nobel and sports has its gold medals, but where is the recognition for our nation’s educators? Enter Lowell Milken and the Milken Educator Awards.

The Milken Educator Awards, created by Lowell Milken in 1987, have rewarded and inspired excellence in the world of education by honoring top educators around the country with $25,000 unrestricted awards. Not an accolade for “lifetime achievement” or the proverbial gold watch at the exit door, the Milken Educator Awards targets early-to-mid career education professionals for their already impressive achievements and, more significantly, for the promise of what they will accomplish in the future.

Recipients are caught by surprise when their names are announced at emotional all-school assemblies in front of cheering students, proud colleagues, distinguished officials and the media. There’s a reason why many call it it the “Oscars of Teaching”—new Milken Educators have even been asked for autographs by admiring students! And while the celebrity treatment is well-deserved, the Awards aren’t about the glitz and glamour. They’re about bringing attention to these classroom heroes; serving at once as validation, motivation and inspiration to current and future quality educators. The message: We recognize you. We value you. We thank you.

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